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Harjeet showed yet again why he is the top pacer racing in the state with an exciting victory in the Toreace Flying Mile on Sunday night at Tab Park in Hobart. The striking Rocknroll Hanover – Our Zellweger five-year-old gelding (pictured), trained and driven by Todd Rattray, backed up from his slashing Tassie Golden Apple win over Scooterwillrev in Launceston on 14 December with another powerful performance against his arch-rival over 1609-metres. Rohan Hadley took the Craig Hayes prepared Scooterwillrev to the front at the bell after being trapped three-wide through the first 600-metres from the outside front line draw. “I knew Rohan (Hadley) would want to work Scooter to the front, so I sat back midfield until I could see he was going to find the top and then made our move up into the death at the 800-metre pole'” said Todd. “The race was on in earnest from there, they are two top horses and we went down the back in 27.6 seconds, Harjeet was just a little rough through the turn off the back so I just eased on the corner into the straight but once we straightened up I was confident he would finish the better. Harjeet scored by a head in a mile-rate of 1:55.5 and will now head to either the Devonport Cup on 27 January or the Hobart Pacing Cup on 3 February. “We are undecided at the moment, he would be off 20-metres in a stand-start at Devonport while the Hobart Cup is a mobile which suits him best so we are leaning in that direction,” said Todd. Todd also has one eye on his young champion Ignatius as he prepares for another mainland mission. “He arrived in Sydney on Saturday and appears to be over the slight infection that cost him what was to be his only Tasmanian run this campaign, he will have a trial and we will take it from there to have him cherry-ripe for the Chariots Of Fire.” Other feature race winners on the TTC programme on Sunday night were the Peter Dornauf trained Sea Double Ugrant in the New Norfolk Cup, notching up a winning hat-trick, while Ima Ginger Rogers capped off a sensational weekend for trainer Steve Davis winning the Matron Stakes to go with Black Centurian’s North Eastern Pacing Cup victory at Scottsdale on Friday. Trainer-driver Paul Hill lifted his four-year-old Feelin Dusty over the line to score by a head over by stablemate Streitkid in the Ted Plunkett Memorial.   Shane Yates

St Marys Cup winner Black Centurian celebrated a long-overdue and richly deserved victory in the $12,000 Bridport Hotel North Eastern Pacing Cup on Friday evening at Scottsdale. The Steve Davis prepared Jr Mint-Mon Poppy Mary nine-year-old gelding has had a luckless run in the Cup over the years finishing runner-up on three times, beaten by a narrow margin on each occasion. “Black Centurian (pictured) loves the Scottsdale track and performs well here, he’s just always found one better on the night every year and gone down by a nose or a half-head each time,” said Steve shaking his head. “He has come to Scottsdale this year in top form coming off victory in the St Marys Cup, it’s great that he has finally cracked the big one here, it was a super run and an outstanding drive by Gareth (Rattray) to come from last at the 400-metre mark and win like he did.” Racing was tight and compact and certainly no place for the faint of heart as the Cup field of ten thundered into the straight to receive the bell, it appeared likely something had to give and it was last year’s Cup winner Full Speed Ahead that almost sold out, going down on his nose at the tail of the field after clipping a wheel. The Wayne Campbell prepared race favourite Buster William hit the front at the 250-metre mark but Black Centurian was winding up out four wide on the track. The pair drew level before the turn and the Cup developed into a battle royal down the home stretch. “Buster William is a smart horse but I was confident as they turned for home Black Centurian had his measure,” said Steve “He’s tough, strong and courageous and you always knows he’s going to be giving 100 per cent right down to the wire, we will press on now to Devonport on 27 January in a bid for his third Cup win in a month.   Shane Yates

The Country Cup’s Carnival rolls on today at Scottsdale with the running of the Bridport Hotel North Eastern Pacing Cup over 2692 metres. Reigning champion Full Speed Ahead (pictured), trained by Todd Rattray, will defend his title against last season’s Steve Davis prepared runner-up and this year’s St Marys Cup winner Black Centurian. “Black Centurian could almost drive himself to Scottsdale, he’s been there so many times and run off some stiff handicaps and been beaten narrow margins to some smart horses,” said Steve. “The track is only small but he just loves it, he can’t go a yard at Burnie but grows a leg when he spots the Scottsdale sign post.” The Ben Yole-prepared Perfect Mach is in search of its second Cup success in the space of a week after streaking away with the 7BU Burnie Cup for Hannah van Dongen last Friday to record its first Tasmanian victory. “We bought him as a Country Cups circuit horse but he hadn’t shown us a lot until last week, but on the strength of that run he has to be a chance today,” said Ben. The 2016 North Eastern Cup winner Major Callum is back for another tilt at the feature, the eight-year-old Art Major gelding was in the care of Juanita McKenzie when defeating Black Centurian by a head but is now trained by Brooke Hammond and will gain the services of Rod Ashwood for today’s assignment. The Todd Rattray-trained Meander Valley Cup winner Goggo Gee Gee has drawn the pole while Buster William, for Wayne Campbell, will be out to keep its North Eastern Cup Day record intact having won in 2017 as a three-year-old and again last year by 17 metres. Today’s Bridport Hotel North Eastern Cup programme, will be streamed live from Scottsdale at with a preview of the meeting with host Duncan Dornauf before the first, set down for decision at 16.37.   Shane Yates  

Sidmouth harness racing trainer Ben Yole claimed half of the card at Burnie on Sunday including the $12,000 7BU Burnie Cup with Perfect Mach. The Mach Three-Pixel Perfect eight-year-old (pictured) scored his first win for the stable since arriving in the state in November. “That was his thirteenth start for us since we claimed him in Victoria, he ran a top second behind Riverboat Jasper in the NWTLHA Cup at his first run in Tasmania, we bought him with the Country Cup circuit in mind so it was great to see him find his best form at Burnie, he will now head to Scottsdale on Friday for the North-Eastern Cup,” said Ben. “The driving appointment was like a merry-go-round, Sam (Gangell) had driven Perfect Mach at his last four outings, she gave the drive up to Troy (McDonald), then Troy went and landed a double on Friday night in Launceston and lost his claim so we had to grab Hannah at the last minute, but it all worked out well as she drove him a treat.” Ben, in quest of his fourth straight trainer’s premiership, is enjoying another runaway lead in the 2018/19 season but was quick to share the success of the stable with the team. “Tim (Yole) is a vital cog in the wheel, he does a fantastic job as stable foreman and runs a well-oiled machine, Samantha (Gangell) and Troy (McDonald) are vital in their roles, we have a lot of horses so we are lucky that the team is all in there working for each other, any success we have we can put down to a team effort,” said an appreciative trainer. Mark Yole had another successful day chipping in with three winning drives to increase his lead in the Driver’s Premiership. “Mark has been in great form in the sulky, his drive on Northview Dave to come from outside the 10-metre line to lead after 250-metres was sensational,” said Ben. “That was on the back of winning efforts with Heidi Go Seek and the Karalta Dazzler in the opening two races.” 07 January 2019 | Shane Yates  

Star Tasmanian pacer Ignatius is an early scratching from Friday night's Launceston Pacing Club meeting. Trainer Todd Rattray made the decision tonight after he examined the results of blood tests showing the young champion had not fully recovered from a slight infection. "He's not far off being ready to start him but we wouldn't knowingly start any horse that wasn't 100% right so there will be no risks taken," said a disappointed trainer. "We were looking forward to seeing him race here in Tasmania in preparation for another mainland campaign but time is against now for that to happen." Ignatius (pictured), the reigning Tasmanian Horse of the Year and New South Wales Three-Year-Old of the Year, is being set for next month's $200,000 Chariots Of Fire at Menangle Park in Sydney. "Tonight's issue is a set back for sure, not a major one but a set back all the same, when you are coming up against the best horses in Australia everything needs to be going well, not mishaps here and there along the way," said Todd. "We are planning on a direct trip to Sydney with him and that just doesn't happen by clicking your fingers, we were hoping to give him one run here at home but that may be tricky now, he'll have to have a run prior to the heats of the Chariots so we will just have to play it by ear and see how it pans out."   Shane Yates

Black Centurian grabbed its second St Marys Cup in the space of four years for Spreyton trainer Steve Davis. The nine-year-old tuned back the clock to 2015, teaming up again with champion reinsman  Garerth Rattray to record a sensational victory over Dasher Houli for Spreyton trainer Steve Davis. “He’s been a great old warrior for us he deserved to win another feature Cup, he’s gone so close so many times,” said Steve. “Black Centurian’s victory in 2015 was exciting but to see him come out and repeat the dose four years later off 20-metres was a great thrill.” Black Centurian showed his usual speed off the mark to settle three back the pegs for champion reinsman Gareth Rattray sitting on the back of Dasher Houli which was camped behind early leader Alta Surreal who led from outside the front line. “As they turned for home Dasher Houli hit the front but Black Centurian was the widest runner and coming hard,” said Steve. “The pair came away from the rest of the field to fight out the finish with Gareth lifting him over the line in the last few strides to win.” The nine-year-old Jr Mint – Mon Poppy Mary gelding will now follow the same path as recent years on the Country Cup circuit. “We will head to Scottsdale again next week, he loves the track and been runner-up in the North Eastern Cup for the last three years,” said the dual code trainer. “Gareth will be sticking with him at Scottsdale and then he will contest the Devonport Cup, he ran fourth last year to Riverboat Jasper and in 2017 he finished second to Pachacuti so we know he’s up to it.” The win sparked a successful back half of the six race card for Gareth Rattray piloting home the last three winners Mavis Merle ($1.80), Black Centurian ($7.70) and Give Me The Night ($2.30).   Shane Yates  

Rohan Hillier pulled off a successful hit and run mission at Carrick Park on Sunday steering home three winners including two of his stable runners. Beachboy Butch (pictured) started Rohan’s winning run with a spectacular victory in the Rebecca White MP Pace. The Somebeachsomewhere-Lifeline four-year-old gelding had galloped in the score up at it’s two Tasmanian start so Rohan decided to take no chances. “I elected to keep him back 15 metres at the start and it worked out well he tends to as he fires-up in the field, he was a distinct last for the first half of the race but once we made our move at the bell I was feeling confident he had them covered,” said Rohan. “He sprinted up well under a good hold out four and five wide and went to the front on straightening, he dashed clear at the top of the stretch, I may have got to the front a little early because he switched right off but he was very impressive.” The Marc Butler prepared Adele Said provided Rohan with the middle pin of his driving treble with a sensational run from well back in the field. “Adele Said scored a dynamic victory, Marc (Butler) has her going really well that’s her third win for the season and she was unlucky not to win last time at Carrick when second to Alta Surreal,” said the Beauty Point reinsman. “They went hard down the back and that improved her chances and when I pulled her out wide on the track she hit top gear and it was all over.” Rohan’s second win as a trainer came with Im Compliant overcoming early troubles to swap them late for a spectacular victory. “Im Compliant had all sorts of issues early avoiding a few problems and I ended up the only place I didn’t want to be three back on the pegs,” said Rohan shaking his head. “When we finally got out at the 350-metre mark I thought we were racing for second place but he let down magnificently and sprinted home over the top of them like a very good horse, he may be a better sprinter than I originally thought.” War Dan Star got punters off on the right leg in the opener with Gareth Rattray piloting the Chris Aylett trained four-year-old Western Terror – Molly’s Lucky Star gelding to his first win of the season. The $1.50 favourite led all the way over the 2150-metre journey, skipping clear on the home turn to win by an ever-increasing margin of fourteen metres. Todd Rattray guided his Bettors Delight – Ashkalini six-year-old gelding to an exciting victory in the Maxfield Drilling Meander Valley Cup. Goggo Gee Gee had been given the run of the race before fighting off Iam Aw Sam and Ima Ginger Rogers to win by three metres, returning a mile rate for the 2650 metre staying trip of 2:04:3. Ricky Duggan surged Mi Ju Dan ($11.10) to the post to nail Pockets Of Courage in the very last stride to win by a short half head for Westbury trainer Rod Plunkett while Gareth Rattray completed a winning double when he lifted the Michael Smith trained All Style Sammy($13.30) over the line to defeat the favourite Illegal Immigrant ($1.20) by a head. Punters put their faith in the Rohan Hadley trained and driven Believe In Forever and they were rewarded with victory first-up from a six-month spell but just as they were thinking how easy this punting game is along came the Geoff Madden trained and driven Master Paige delivered a knock-out in the last at odds off $91.80, scoring by a lip over fellow outsiders Our Boy Johnny ($44) and Only A Myth ($35).   Shane Yates

Leading Female trainer Bianca Heenan and premier reinsman Ricky Duggan celebrated the new era of the Tasmanian Trotting Club in Hobart on Friday with winning trebles. Bianca’s successes commenced with the in-form Twenty Two Karat saluting after being backed into $2.90 favouritism in the Tasmanian Equine Veterinary Pace. Hannah van Dongen drove the Always A Virgin – Goldleaf four-year-old mare confidently finding the breeze early before scooting to the front and dashing clear at the 400-metre mark to notch up her fifth win of the season. Star Chamber ($2.40) showed he’s ready for the state’s feature races over the Christmas – New Year break with a powerful performance off the back mark in the Col Saunders Memorial Brighton Cup. “Star Chamber stepped away quickly from the 30-metre handicap and settled just worse than midfield, Rod (Ashwood) took The Aussie to the early lead and I had the co-backmarker Isaac on our back,” said Mark. “Approaching the bell I knew Ricky (Duggan) was getting itchy fingers with Isaac and looking to flush me out to give him cover but I was happy to make our move because I was confident he was travelling strongly.” Star Chamber, having its run back in the state from a mainland campaign, took over from The Aussie at the turn off the back but the ten-year-old Our Sir Vancelot – Courtney Breeze gelding still had Isaac stalking him. “The pressure was on and I was a sitting duck really, but that’s when his quality, courage and will to win to kicked in” said the premiership leading reinsman. “We turned for home a sulky’s length in clear and held Isacc all the way down the stretch.” Christian Salter handed Bianca her third winner for the night when Trumps Golden Boy ($5.00) trotted to back-to-back victories in the Alderbaran Park Trotters Mile. Ricky Duggan’s Christmas came early piloting home Streitkid ($2.70 fav) for Paul Hill, the Christian Salter prepared Madaboutthechase ($7.00) and the Rod Ashwood trained Still Hungover ($1.80 fav). Shane Yates

Classy six-year-old Taurisi proved he’s one of the best pacers in the state with his outstanding win in heat one of the Tassie Golden Applie Series  in Launceston on Sunday night. Punters who had backed the Todd Rattray trained and driven pacer into $1.70 had their hearts in their mouths until Todd extricated the Always’s A Virgin – Exclusif gelding away from the peg line at the 800-metre mark. With runs coming on his outside Todd sat quietly and although shuffled back to third last down the back the popular pick was now seeing daylight. Todd eased Taurisi (pictured) to the outside inside the 400-metre pole and he powered home down the stretch out five wide to gain the day in the last few strides over Mister Lennox, Offthetopofmyhead and Another Swinger. “Getting him away from the stand is always tricky, we didn’t lose a lot of ground at the start and we got a soft run which is what he needs in his races and I knew once we got into the clear he could run them down,” said Todd. Taurisi recorded a mile rate of 2.02.7 with the last half of 57.7 sec, but it wasn’t a race that was won on times, it was won by a cool-headed driver and a horse that showed his courage and tenacity to be never beaten. With the first heat run and won attention quickly turned to heat two and the eagerly awaited clash of Scooterwillrev and reigning Easter Cup winner Harjeet. The rock hard race fitness of the Craig Hayes prepared Scooterwillrev, the winner of five of his last six starts, up against Harjeet first up from a six-month spell. “Scooterwillrev was very impressive, finding the lead at the mile and running sensational sectionals coming home the last half in 55.6 seconds, but I was very happy with Harjeet’s effort to sit outside the leader and stick on so gamely in the stretch to finish third running those times,” said Todd. “He appears to have pulled up well, we don’t work him hard at home as he gets his fitness from racing so with the run under his belt he will strip much fitter for Friday night’s Gold Apple Final Todd was also aboard Harjeet’s half-brother Izaha in the second race of the night, the Roll With Joe – Our Zellweger four-year-old made it seven wins from a 12 start career with a herculean effort to defeat Secluded Beach by a head. “He was first up since May, started from outside the front line and to then race in the death and run the time they did of 1:56.1 for the mile was a super performance,” said a delighted trainer-driver. “Given he begins well from the tapes I might run him in the Country Cups but his main mission is the Raider Stakes at Devonport in May.”   Shane Yates

Bianca Heenan, Hannah van Dongen, Ben Yole , Mark Yole and Rod Ashwood all enjoyed successful evenings in Hobart on Friday picking up winning doubles. Bianca Heenan extended her lead in the Female Trainers Premiership with the first two winners on the card both steered home by rising star Hannah van Dongen. “Big Bang Raj ran right up to his last outing to win strongly from a tricky draw outside the front line, he began well but couldn’t get across without using too much petrol so Hannah just allowed him to settle midfield and waited for the early speed to come out of the race before making her move,” said Bianca. “Big Bang Raj got a breather in the middle stages and when the pressure came on at the 400 metre mark he was ready to go and he took over turning for home and burst clear to win easily, I was also happy with the run of stablemate Swap Me which ran on strongly to run the quinella at double figure odds.” Bianca and Hannah team up again in race two with Alta Surreal making it back-to back victories after scoring in style at Carrick on Sunday. “Alta Surreal (pictured) is in a rich vein of form he won powerfully last week and once he found the front I was feeling confident, ” said the Brighton trainer. “He was attacked and headed by Jake’s A Joy at the bell but Hannah didn’t panic, she was rating Alta Surreal well and at the 400 metre pole she lifted the tempo and he strolled away for five  metre win.” Ben and Mark Yole combined with seven-year-old mare I’m Paige coming from the one – one and Diamond Grace overpowering The Lemon Drop Kid after sitting in the breeze while Rod Ashwood was successful with the Juanita McKenzie prepared Isacc toppling stablemate Laredo Torpedo before saluting in the last for Ken Shorter with odds-on favourite Betterthanfetta.   Shane Yates

Punters following the runaway Bianca Heenan train will look to get the cash early on this evening’s Tasmanian Pacing Club card in Hobart. The Brighton trainer sits second on the State Trainers Premiership table behind Ben Yole and clearly heads the Leading Female Premiership with 14 wins, three months into the new season. Bianca joins forces with rising star Hannah van Dongen in the opening two races on the programme with Big Bang Raj ($5.50) and Alta Surreal ($3.00). Big Bang Raj (pictured), started off the second line and was fourth last at the bell before powering home to run second to Rocknroll Dancer in wet and wild conditions a fortnight ago and has drawn outside the front line for his latest assignment over the flying mile in the opener the Cascade Draught Pace. “Big Bang Raj has had no luck with the draws of late, he can mix his form a little but he has been going well this season, he was a winner in Hobart five starts back over 2090 metres and his last run in Launceston he was only beaten a little over three metres running fourth to Goggo Gee Gee,” said Bianca. “Hannah (van Dongen) has had a great start to the season and is driving with her tail up so while its a tricky draw I’m confident she will give him every chance.” Alta Surreal will line up in race two the Rexel North Hobart Pace over 1609 metres and has fared much better with the draw starting from three on the front row. “I was really happy with his effort at Carrick on Sunday, he’s been beaten a few times in close finishes so it was his turn to get the judges nod,” said Bianca “It was a tough run sitting outside the leader but he kept on finding in the stretch to hold off Adele Said to win by a head, I think he is going to be in the finish again.” This evening’s Tasmanian Pacing Club card, commencing at 17.40, may be viewed via the live stream service at The meeting is the first leg of a huge doubleheader this weekend with the Launceston Pacing Club gearing up for the heats of the inaugural Tassie Golden Apple on Sunday with star pacers Harjeet, Scooterwillrev and Taurisi headlining the eight-event programme. Shane Yates

Champion reinsman Ricky Duggan was at his brilliant best at Carrick on Sunday steering home four winners on the seven-event twilight card. The first of Ricky’s quartet was enough to floor punters in the opener, charging home out in the centre of the track on the Adrian Duggan trained five-year-old mare Forever Ours ($17.90). “She’s a good little sit-sprinter, they went hard down the back which took care of most of them and she has a zippy 300 metre dash up her sleeve so when we were close enough on the home turn I was thinking we were going to be in the finish.” The Hall Of Fame reinsman provided punters with the smelling salts to lift them off the canvas in race two when he piloted the Rodney Ashwood prepared Sutter Hanover – Crystal Still three-year-old filly Still Hungover ($1.50) to the post five-metres clear of second favourite Our Wonder Woman. “Rod (Ashwood) had her primed for a first up tilt, he’s worked hard on her giving her four trials in the lead-up to Carrick so he deserved to reap the rewards” said Ricky. “It’s the first time I’ve driven her and she gave me a good feel, that’s her second win now from five starts and I’d say there are more wins ahead for connections.” Duggan made it three-straight to start the day with Ima Ginger Rogers ($4.80) saluting in race three over 2150-metres. “Ima Ginger Rogers did a great job to come off the 20 metre handicap and win like she did, it was a drop in class for her but she had to pull out something special to win,” said Ricky. “They dropped us off coming off the back but she rallied to the cause when she needed to and she hit the line strongly, it was her first win for season but I’d say she will pinch another one or two on that run.” Trainer Rod Ashwood completed a winning double in the last on the card with the consistent Miss Superbia ($10.20) leading all the way for victory. “She’s not a star but she is consistent, she hasn’t missed a place in eight starts this season and now she has put two together on the trot,” said Duggan. “We got away with an easy first three quarters of a lap and she had enough in hand to hold off the in-form Twenty Two Karat which finished powerfully.”   Shane Yates

Ten-time leading Tasmanian reinsman Gareth Rattray has had a slower start to the season than he is accustomed to. Gareth currently sits eighth on the 2018/19 Premiership table on seven wins, 10 off the lead set by Mark Yole, but that could all change at tonight’s Devonport Harness Racing Club meeting. Gareth has a drive in all six races on the card including leading hopes Tisu Bombbelle, North Star Lad,  Elect to Go and Safari Oakey. The Tim Maine trained Tisu Bombbelle will start from gate two on front line with the scratching of the emergency in race one, the Maxfield Drilling Pace over the sprint trip of 1930 metres. “She’s got a good draw tonight but it’s still going to be hard to cross Swap Me, I’d say James (Austin) will be keen to hold the top and if he does he’ s going to be hard to get over the top of,” said Gareth. “Tisu Bombbelle ran a solid third to Rattlenhum at her last run on the track when Try McDonald drove her in the Youngbloods Series and I will be planning on taking a forward position.” North Star Lad, trained at Northdown by Geoff Smith, has returned from a four length spell in top condition winning the first two races of his five-year-old season. “Geoff”s brought him back bigger and stronger, his two wins have been impressive both by convincing margins, he won at Devonport over Our Wonder Woman by seven metres which then went on and won in Launceston in good style, ” said the master reinsman. “North Star Lad showed the win wasn’t a flash in the pan by running down Laconic Jamane in Launceston last week, I’ll be looking to get a cart into the race at some stage and he will be hard to hold out.” Juanita McKenzie fresh from preparing Remember Joe for victory in Hobart on Friday night has Elect To Go in the third race the Collins Homes Pace. “Elect To Go is a six-year-old mare, she’s had 58 runs in her career and this will be her first start from the stand and her first look at the Devonport track so there are a few unknowns, on the plus side she ran a nice second to Kvitova Leis in the Mother Of Pearl last week in Launceston when she went around at huge odds ($76) after sitting outside the leader and battled on courageously.” said Gareth. “Kare MacLeod’s Safari Oakey (pictured) in race five is my other top chance, she’s come with the pole over the 1930 metres so this could be her best chance to break the ice, she was midfield first up so she will have derived improvement from the outing.” Tonight’s compact DHRC meeting, commencing at 17.57pm, may be viewed via the live stream service at Shane Yates

It was a bleak night for punters at the Tasmanian Pacing Club meeting on Friday in Hobart. The first five winners on the eight-event card all starting at double figure-odds with Ricky Duggan and Rod Ashwood both playing leading roles. The Sportswriter-Spice On Ice four-year-old mare Miss Superbia ($12) (pictured) was rewarded for her consistency in the opener, the Cascade Draught Pace, after running six straight placings this season for trainer Rod Ashwood she was finally first to greet the judge. “She’s been knocking on the door since August, she hasn’t missed a place since then and even though she is no star she is very honest and Rick (Duggan) handled her a treat,” said trainer Rod Ashwood. “Miss Superbia ran the gate from a wide draw over the 1609 -metre trip, spearing to the lead on settling and although she was pressured all the way by the favourite Mister Last was still travelling at the 400-metre mark before Ricky lifted the tempo and she kicked clear for a three-metre win.” Rod was in the winner’s circle again in race two the Rexel North Hobart Pace this time in the cart behind the Eric Jacobson prepared War Chest ($20). “War Chest has been a little off his best of late but he won three straight last year so I knew he had the ability to be in the finish and when they slackened off up front at the 1200 pole we whipped around the field to take our chances from the death seat,” said Rod. “We’d had plenty of rain late in the weak and the track was fairly heavy so up near the led was the place to be and he had a great battle all the way with the leader Pockets Of Courage and after a slugging go had enough in hand to hold off the fast-finishing favourite Sea Ugrant.” Duggan followed up in the third the Tasmanian Equine Veterinary Pace with the Paul Medhurst prepared Rocknroll Highlight producing the goods at $41, defeating fellow outsiders Big Bang Raj ($17) and Im Full Tilt ($16). Ashwood finished off the night on a more popular note with punters guiding home his Raceatrotter Syndicate trained trotter Redason ($1.85). “He’s been working well, the key was trotting all the way, he’s a good type and when he puts it all together he’s always going to be hard to hold out,” said Ashwood. “We had a charmed run on the tail of the 40-metre backmarker Ten Cassies and when Nat (Emery) ran to the front off the back we just tracked them into the straight before getting home over the top for a powerful win.”   Shane Yates

Rohan Hadley showed his expertise in the sulky in Launceston on Friday night landing a winning treble. Hadley, long regarded as one of the best in the business, plotted a perfect course on 30-metre backmarker Scooterwillrev (pictured) enabling the Craig Hayes prepared Somebeachsomewhere-Karamea Toastime five-year-old gelding to sprint clear of Riverboat Jasper at the top of the stretch to score a runaway victory in the Doug Martin Danbury Park Cup. “Scooterwillrev is a top line professional racehorse, Craig (Hayes) has him flying at the moment, we got away well off the 30 and were aided by the fact the front line was slowly away and there were no 20-metre runners,” said Rohan. “We hoped to get a cart into the race from Riverboat Jasper as he is as strong as they come and that’s the way it panned out, Scooter was cruising on the home corner and he has such a paralysing sprint so when I called upon him at the turn it was all over in the twinkling of the eye and he went on to score by a dozen metres (11.8 metres). Rohan had already lifted his five-year gelding Secluded Beach to its second win in just three Tasmanian starts in a stirring finish over Hez The One. “I’ve got a big opinion of him, he was formerly trained by John Tapp in New South Wales and Tappy believed he had more than his share of ability as well,” said Rohan. “I’m confident we can race him through his classes, he has a lot to learn but I believe he has the potential to be right up there with the top free-for-allers in the state.” Our Wonder Woman was the third winner for Rohan as a driver and the second leg of his training double. “She has now won two of her six starts and while she didn’t hit the line the way quite I expected I will continue to get more miles in her legs, she will race at Devonport next week and then press on with her campaign, she is almost certain to race at Scottsdale mid-January.” Conor Crook defied late challenges from Hannah van Dongen and Samantha Gangell to claim the  2018 6ty° Youngbloods Challenge. Conor all but sealed his rivals fate by finishing second on odds-on favourite Couta Rocks in Heat 5 before clinching the title by finishing fourth with Tisu Bombbelle in the sixth and final Heat. Hannah van Dongen closed the gap in the opening heat piloting Goggo Gee Gee to victory while Matthew Howlett gained maximum points in the final Heat of the series with the Bianca Heenan prepared $2.20 favourite Twenty Two Karat.   Shane Yates

Junior driver Taylor Ford stormed clear at the top of the Leading Female Drivers award after steering home a winning double in Hobart on Friday taking her winning tally to six winners and in the process moved to fifth place on the State Premiership table. Ford has formed a formidable force with trainer Bianca Heenan early in the 2018/19 season and further enhanced her reputation in the gig with two wins and a second placing from four drives. Taylor finished second with Twenty Two Karat, beaten 1.4 metres by the Ben Yole-trained Lake Eyre before finishing midfield with Big Bang Raj behind Secluded Beach. Jacks Command, a seven-year-old gelding, had won two its last three outings coming into the Sky Racing Pace over the 2090-metre trip for trainer Bianca Heenan and was sent out an $8 chance with the Todd Rattray prepared Zhukov Leis, in line for a hat-trick, the $1.50 favourite. Taylor speared Jacks Command to the early lead before dropping anchor through the first quarter running 33.7 seconds, Zhukov Leis sat in the death as Taylor picked up the tempo recording 29.8 and 28.2 sectionals before going for broke inside the 400-metre mark, dropping Zhuvov Leis on the corner and racing clear to score by 11.6 metres running home 57.3 seconds. Taylor’s second winner of the night was Bounty Eyre ($4.20) in the last the Claimer, the ten-year-old Heenan prepared gelding scored at it’s last Hobart appearance three weeks ago before finishing just behind the placegetters at Devonport. Bounty Eyre (pictured) began safely from the stand and settled leading the one out train before Taylor eased to gain cover at the mile-marker. As the field entered the back straight on the last occasion Taylor made her winning move easing out three wide before challenging for the lead racing off the back. Ford laid all her cards on the table on the home turn and Bounty Eyre was up to the challenge responding strongly in the home stretch to win by 3.2-metres over Another Swinger and Im Barney Rubble. Shane Yates

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