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Members of the WA Trotting Media Guild are united in their view that a runner from the  yard of husband and wife team Greg and Skye Bond - the leading trainers in WA this season - will win Friday night’s $200,000 Group 1 Golden Nugget (2536m) at Gloucester Park. But the $64,000 question, or more correctly the $128,000 question - the first-prize cheque for winning the Nugget - is which of the six Bond runners will reign supreme? Most believe it will be Ana Malak, who won the $125,000 4YO Classic (2130m) a fortnight ago when he was having only his eighth start in a race and his first look at headquarters. He draws the same gate as he did two weeks ago and Ryan Warwick will be looking for another all-the-way victory. RWWA’s racing communications co-ordinator Tim Walker and longshot maestro Pat Harding have made Ana Malak their best bet for the night. “Expect star four-year-old of the season Ana Malak to complete a clean sweep here,” Walker said. “The draw has helped him again. He should be able to hold the front as he did a fortnight ago and lead home what could be a stable first four with some luck.” And Harding agrees. “I believe the Bond stable will dominate the Golden Nugget and my top selection is Ana Malak coming from barrier one,” Harding said. “His last two runs have been spectacular and I expect him to make it three in a row.” GPTV’s Ken Casellas and veteran tipster Stuart Lowe are keen on Our Angel Of Harlem. “Our Angel of Harlem should appreciate starting from the No. 1 barrier for the first time in 16 starts in WA when she begins from the pole in race six on Friday night,” Casellas said. “I recommend that you completely overlook her 10th behind Millview Sienna last Friday night.” Lowe is in agreement with his colleague. “My best bet is Our Angel Of Harlem, who struck severe interference in last week’s Westral Classic and finished out of the money,” Lowe said. “Her previous form was outstanding and with the pole draw this looks her race.” The West Australian’s Ernie Manning and the racing co-ordinator at The West Ryan Havercroft believe Saying Grace can win again. “Saying Grace, shaping to be yet another class performer for the all-conquering Bond stable, has the class to overcome gate eight,” Manning said. “Astutely handled since arriving from New Zealand early this season, he can score his second Gloucester Park victory.” Havercroft is of the same mindset. “Saying Grace exploded once he saw daylight upon straightening for home last week,” Havercroft said. “Form prior to that had been good and he looks to have the class to overcome a wide draw in his Christmas Gift heat.” Budding racecaller Hayden King has thrown out Runaway Three as his best for the night. “Runaway Three should settle close enough in the run and is racing in career-best form,” King said. “Very confident that he'll get the right run and prove too classy.” TABradio’s Matt Young is keen on the chances of comeback pacer Mr Mojito. “Mr Mojito has had two runs back from a spell and both have been impressive, looks his race on Friday night,” Young said. Guild president Wayne Currall believes champion reinsman Chris Lewis can hunt Bettor Finish out from his rails draw and lead all the way in the seventh race on the card. “Bettor Finish is not blessed with speed from the machine,” Currall said. “But Chris Lewis is a master at getting horses away quickly from the mobile and he’ll be mighty hard to run down if he does find the top.”   VALUE BETS Tim: Gotta Go Gabbana had little luck last week in the Mares Classic. She’s good enough to bounce back here and has her main danger outside of her. Pat: My value bet for the night comes up in race nine with No. 2 Campora. Lauren Jones has a habit of bobbing up on horses from the Gary Hall stable, particularly when they have drawn well. I think Campora will give punters a very good sight. Ken: For value, I suggest Scoobys Delight in race eight in which the Matt Saw-trained six-year-old is favourably drawn at barrier one and should make the most of his gate speed and frontrunning capabilities.  Stuart: My value bet is Bettor Aim, who has won all five WA starts brilliantly. He steps up in class here but is well drawn and has good each-way claims. Ernie: Thereugo, a winner of 13 races at Gloucester Park, should never be underrated. He has drawn the front line, after running fifth from the second row at his last start. Ryan: Walkinshaw never got into the race when three wide for a lap before being restrained and finishing at the tail of the field two weeks ago. Can improve sharply. Hayden: Bettor Aim missed the 4YO Classic but should secure a soft trip just off the pace and finish with brilliance. Fitness may not be an issue as a gentle tempo - relative to other G1s - looks likely. Will have his work cut out to beat the stablemate though. Matt: Runaway Three is racing well and is an each-way chance in the small field. Wayne: American Dynasty is racing in career-best form with three wins from his last four starts. He should get a nice run from his second-line draw and will be charging home late. Members of the Guild wish Greg and Skye Bond, Ryan Warwick and connections the best of luck with their Inter Dominion Final runner Galactic Star on Saturday night at Melton. The WA pacer has drawn ideally in gate one and is capable of winning with the right run in transit. To view all of the Media Guild tips click here. Good Punting     Wayne Currall

Champion reinsman Chris Lewis has given punters a strong pointer by choosing to drive Bettor Finish in preference to Beltane, Innocent Affair and Destined To Rule in the Retravision Lowest Price Guarantee Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He has handled the Barry Howlett-trained Bettor Finish in 28 races for six wins, ten seconds and two thirds and he will be aiming to take full advantage of the prized No. 1 barrier on the front line by attempting an all-the-way victory. Bettor Finish has good gate speed and is a noted frontrunner. The five-year-old led from barrier one when a fighting second to crack three-year-old Bletchley Park in a 2185m event at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon. Two starts before that Bettor Finish led from barrier one and won from Northern Emperor and Luis Alberto over 2130m at Gloucester Park. Lewis drove four-year-old Beltane to a decisive 8m victory over Luis Alberto at Gloucester Park two starts ago and at Gloucester Park last Saturday night trainer Nathan Turvey was in the sulky when Beltane impressed greatly when he charged home from the rear to finish a nose second to Major Rush. Turvey will again drive Beltane on Friday night. Lewis has driven Innocent Affair, a four-year-old mare trained by his wife Debra, at 22 of her 23 starts for seven wins and eight placings. Innocent Affair is in top form, with her past five starts producing three wins and two placings. Jocelyn Young will drive Innocent Affair, who will start from barrier five. Deni Roberts will drive Destined To Rule for her mother, Millendon trainer Sonia Zucchiatti. Lewis has enjoyed a successful association with Destined To Rule, with his 33 drives on her producing six wins, two seconds and six thirds. One of the best bets on the ten-event program should be Our Angel of Harlem, who will enjoy the luxury of starting from the No. 1 barrier for the first time in 16 starts in Western Australia when she contests a heat of the Coulson Pace. The New Zealand-bred four-year-old has yet to lead all the way in any of her races, but trainer Mike Reed is confident she will lead and win on Friday night. Her chief rival will be the Justin Prentice-trained Our Major Mama, an effortless first-up winner at Pinjarra on November 12. Ken Casellas

Ryan Warwick is driving with wonderful aggression and skill and punters who believe in omens will support him to win the opening event, the Retravision Christmas Gift first heat, at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He will handle evergreen veteran Courage Tells, who is favourably drawn at the No. 2 barrier in the field of nine in the 2130m event. Warwick was also in the sulky behind Courage Tells in the corresponding meeting 12 months ago when the gelding, a rank outsider at $114.50, finished boldly from four back on the pegs at the bell to win from Johnny Disco and Three Blind Mice. The 11-year-old Courage Tells, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, has been a consistent performer throughout his 200-start career which has produced 33 wins (two in New Zealand, eight in Victoria, seven in New South Wales and 16 in Western Australia) as well as 50 placings for earnings of $339,093. Courage Tells was far from disgraced in a 2631m stand at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon when he raced five back on the pegs and finished strongly to be third behind Tanaka Eagle and Importer Exporter. At Pinjarra the previous Monday Courage Tells took the lead in the middle stages and won by almost three lengths from Sweet N Fast, with a final 800m in 56.7sec. Warwick is enjoying an outstanding season and has already chalked up 81 wins from 171 drives to be the State’s leading driver, 34 wins ahead of Chris Lewis. The Bonds also are setting a cracking pace on the trainers’ premiership table, with 78 winners from 168 starters a lead of 51 over their nearest rival, Gary Hall Snr. Courage Tells cannot be disregarded on Friday night, despite the presence of several in-form pacers, including The Art Form, Gotta Go Gabbana, Carter Micheal and Livura. The Mike Reed-trained The Art Form deserves favouritism and should prove hard to beat from barrier six. The six-year-old has been gallant in defeat at his past two starts when second to Fizzing and second to Tisadream, two excellent efforts following a sequence of six successive victories. The Art Form started from barrier nine last week and settled down in eighth position before he commenced a three-wide run after a lap. He quickly moved into the breeze and fought on determinedly to finish a neck second to the pacemaking Tisadream. Gotta Go Gabbana, the only mare in the field, is racing with tremendous heart for trainer Annie Belton and reinsman Chris Voak and looks set to fight out the finish. The Nathan Turvey-trained pair of Carter Micheal and Livura are racing keenly and are sure to be prominent. Turvey will handle Livura and Jocelyn Young will drive Carter Micheal, who is overdue for a change of fortune after several recent excellent performances. Ken Casellas

Star reinsman Ryan Warwick has fond memories of his first Group 1 driving success when he brought 8/1 chance Gee Whiz Fizz home with a sizzling late burst to snatch a thrilling last-stride, half-head victory over the 2/1 favourite Precious Dylan in the Golden Nugget championship on December 16, 2005. Gee Whiz Fizz, trained in Bunbury by Steve Burton, started from the No. 1 barrier, but was outgunned in the early stages by Precious Dylan and Warwick had to be content to take the trail behind the pacemaker before Gee Whiz Fizz, veering out wide on the track, stormed to the front in a dramatic finish. Warwick, now 40 and at the peak of his powers as a top-flight reinsman, is quite understandably thrilled that Ana Malak has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier for the $200,000 Retravision Golden Nugget for four-year-olds at Gloucester Park on Friday night. The lightly-raced and comparatively inexperienced New Zealand-bred horse, prepared by the State’s leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, is in superb form and Warwick will be looking for an all-the-way success over the 2536m trip and hoping for a less traumatic and spine-tingling finish than he experienced with Gee Whiz Fizz. Ana Malak, who has been successful at six of his eight starts, revealed excellent gate speed from barrier one when he comfortably resisted an early challenge from the speedy Golden State in the $125,000 Yes Loans Four-Year-Old Classic over 2130m last Friday week. Ana Malak dashed over the first quarter of the final mile in 28.8sec. before an easy 30.1sec. second section, followed by two final quarters of 28.4sec. He defied a strong late burst from the fast-finishing Ideal Liner to beat that gelding by a half-neck, with the classy Mighty Conqueror, a stablemate of the winner, surging home with a powerful three-wide burst from second-last in the middle stages to be an eye-catching third. Warwick, the Bonds and part-owner Rob Gartrell will be hoping for an Ana Malak victory before Warwick drives Galactic Star, from the coveted No. 1 barrier in the $500,000 Inter Dominion championship final at Melton on Saturday night. Galactic Star has excellent winning prospects. The Bonds hold a powerful hand in the Golden Nugget. Apart from Ana Malak, they will be represented by Bettor Aim, Mighty Conqueror, Fizzing, Thisbeachrighthere and Bright Diamond. The only previous time a trainer had six runners in a Golden Nugget championship was in 2014 when Gary Hall Snr was represented by Waylade, Majorly Foxy Styx, Classic American, Soho Lennon, A Boy Named Rosie and VC Manoeuvre. Waylade, the 11/8 favourite, raced in 11th position and met with interference in the final circuit before finishing with great determination to be a 2m second to Libertybelle Midfrew. Mighty Conqueror, to be driven by Dylan Egerton-Green from barrier three, has won at seven of his nine starts and is certainly capable of testing Ana Malak. Colin Brown will drive Bettor Aim, a winner at six of his nine starts, from the No. 2 barrier. He possesses great gate speed and is a brilliant frontrunner, but he is unlikely to muster enough early speed to get past Ana Malak and take up the running. Aiden de Campo has been engaged to handle the consistent and improving Fizzing from barrier four, Nathan Turvey will drive Thisbeachrighthere from the outside (No. 9) on the front line and Chris Lewis will be in the sulky behind Bright Diamond, who looks set to enjoy an ideal passage after starting from the inside of the back line. Lewis has been successful in the Golden Nugget with Vero Prince (1987), Flashing Star (1994), Saab (1998) and Dasher VC (2010). Hall has won the Nugget with Valley Champ (as a driver in 1993), The Gold Ace (2011) and Beaudiene Boaz (2015) and he will need plenty of luck with his three runners, Ideal Liner (Gary Hall Jnr), Think About Me (Stuart McDonald) and Benhope Rulz (Clint Hall), all of whom have drawn poorly. Ideal Liner, the least experienced runner in the race, with two wins and a close second to Ana Malak from three starts, has wonderful potential, but his prospects slumped when he drew out wide at barrier eight. Think About Me will be at long odds from the No. 6 barrier and Benhope Rulz faces a massive task from the outside of the back line. Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed has prepared three Nugget winners Tricky Vic (2002), Bonavista Bay (2009) and Libertybelle Midfrew (2014) and he refuses to concede defeat, despite his runner, Golden State, drawing barrier two on the back line, which robs the horse of his greatest asset, his dazzling gate speed. “Golden State can also produce a sparkling sprint,” Reed said. Golden State was shuffled back to ninth at the bell and was 11th at the 250m mark before being hampered for room until the final stages, when he finished full of running to be a splendid fifth behind Ana Malak in the Four-Year-Old Championship. Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri, who has won the Nugget with Saab and Dasher VC, is pinning his faith on Stefsbest, a winner at five of his 20 starts. Stefsbest will start from the No. 5 barrier and will be at liberal odds. The only mare in the race is the Kristian Hawkins trained Dontstopbelievin, who faces a monumental task from barrier seven. This week’s classic has been robbed of considerable interest by the absence of the brilliant Jack Mac, who notched his 16thvictory from 18 starts in Western Australia when he scored a stylish win in a Nugget prelude last Friday night. Jack Mac is suffering from a fractured near fore pedal bone. Ken Casellas

Former outstanding young pacer Kiwi Legend has recovered from a serious tendon injury and will resume racing after an absence of 638 days when he contests the Retravision Your Air Conditioning Specialist Free-For-All over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Now a seven-year-old, Kiwi Legend has responded to the diligent and patient care of Bunbury trainer Stephen Reed. Constant wading in the Leschenaultia estuary has contributed to the gelding’s successful rehabilitation. Kiwi Legend has not raced since he set the pace and won easily from Ideal Tyson and Risk in the Four and Five-Year-Old Championship at Gloucester Park in March 2017. That took his record to 31 starts for 12 wins, nine seconds and two thirds for $191,230 in stakes. He finished second to Beaudiene Boaz in the Golden Nugget in December 2015 and led and won the Lord Mayor’s Cup in January 2017. Kiwi Legend warmed up for his return to racing with a smart win in a three-horse 2116m standing-start trial at Pinjarra five Sundays ago. After a leisurely opening quarter of the final mile in 32.3sec., Kiwi Legend took the lead after 900m and dashed over the final three quarters in 28.6sec., 28.8sec. and 28.6sec. He was not extended in defeating ten-year-old Batali by five lengths at a 2.1.9 rate. Mark Reed will drive Kiwi Legend, who will start from the No. 4 barrier in the field of nine. The gelding is sure to derive considerable benefit from his first-up run. Reed is the regular driver of talented mare Maczaffair, who is trained by his father Mike and will start from barrier six. Mark Reed has enjoyed a great association with Maczaffair, having driven her 14 times for seven wins, one second, two thirds, two fourths and two unplaced runs. Maczaffair, an all-the-way winner over Gotta Go Gabbana and Tricky Styx two starts ago, will be handled by Dylan Egerton-Green. Champion reinsman Gary Hall Jnr has given punters a strong lead by choosing to drive the Justin Prentice-trained Rocknroll Lincoln in preference to the well-performed Runrunjimmydunn, who is trained by Gary Hall Snr. Hall Jnr drove Runrunjimmydunn when the five-year-old bounced back to strong form last Friday night when he worked hard without cover before hitting the front 100m from the post and dead-heating for first with Vultan Tin. Clint Hall will drive Runrunjimmydunn this week. Rocknroll Lincoln will be hard to beat from the No. 2 barrier after his strong finishing effort to win the 2569m Bunbury Cup from Vampiro and Im Soxy last Saturday week. One of his chief rivals appears to be the polemarker Talktomeurmattjesty, who looks the likely pacemaker from the coveted No. 1 barrier. Talktomeurmattjesty, trained in Busselton by Barry Howlett, showed a welcome return to form last Friday night when he took the lead after 320m, set a solid pace and covered the final quarters in 27.7sec. and 28.7sec. and finished a close second to Im Soxy. Vultan Tin, trained at Coolup by Phil Costello, should also be prominent after he finished strongly from the rear to dead-heat with Runrunjimmydunn last week. Ken Casellas

Ana Malak has drawn the pole and consolidated favouritism for the Group 1 Retravision Golden Nugget Championship (2536m) at Gloucester Park on Friday night.   One of six runners in the four-year-old feature for trainers Greg and Skye Bond, Ana Malak is unbeaten from his two starts in Perth since crossing from New Zealand.   The Bettors Delight colt is hoping to replicate his victory from an identical position in the Yes Loans 4YO Classic Pace (2130m) on November 30, when he held out Ideal Liner.   In another massive boost for the Bond camp as they strive to win their first Golden Nugget, Bettor Aim has come up with barrier two and Mighty Conqueror in gate three.   Bettor Aim has recovered from a mini setback and passed a vet examination after he was forced to miss the 4YO Classic, the bay gelding is unbeaten from five starts.   Bright Diamond (10), Fizzing (4), and Thisbeachrightthere (9) round out a wonderful barrier draw for Perth’s leading co-training partnership.   FULL BARRIER DRAW 1- Ana Malak (1) 2- Benhope Rulz (12) 3- Bettor Aim (2) 4- Bright Diamond (10) 5- Don’tstopbelievin (7) 6- Fizzing (4) 7- Golden State (11) 8- Ideal Liner (8) 9- Thisbeachrightthere ODM (9) 10- Mighty Conqueror (3) 11- Stefsbest (5) 12- Think About Me (6) 1st Emg Bettor B Abeliever 2nd Emg The Great Dane     Julio Santarelli

If Rob Gartrell allows himself the luxury of dreaming, he could be in line for a massive 48 hours as he strives for a memorable feature interstate double. Perth’s prolific owner could have up to four runners in Friday’s Group 1 Golden Nugget (2536m) at Gloucester Park, headed by Ana Malak, Bettor Aim and Mighty Conqueror. Once his commitments are done and dusted on home soil his attention and focus will turn to Melton in Victoria where he will be represented by Galactic Star in the 2018 Inter Dominion. Western Australia’s sole representative has stepped up to the plate and proved he could be up to the task after recording one win and two placings from the three round of heats. And in a further morale boost for Gartrell and trainers, Greg and Skye Bond, Galactic Star has drawn the coveted inside draw at a function on Monday. What started as an ambitious and lucrative target for Galactic Star has now turned into a distinct winning reality. The Perth pacer is now rated a $5 chance. “That was very exciting and to get barrier one in an Inter Dominion final is exactly what we were hoping for,” Gartrell said on TABradio. “It certainly gives us a good chance in the race and sets ourselves up to be very competitive. “I think the horse has done a fantastic job in the series and it’s the perfect draw for him. “He has good gate speed as we know and should be able to hold up.” After reinsman Todd McCarthy handled the heats, Gartrell confirmed Ryan Warwick had been booked to drive Galactic Star in the final. “Ryan has had a terrific season and is a very important part of our team,” Gartrell said. “He has driven at Melton before and is looking forward to the trip.” Gartrell said he was hoping to get similar good fortune in the barriers for his runners in the Golden Nugget. Ana Malak has underlined his potential with two wins from as many starts since coming to Perth. The Bettors Delight colt is chasing back-to-back feature wins after posting a determined victory in the Group 1 Yes Loans 4YO Classic (2130m) at Gloucester Park on November 30. Bettor Aim also holds an unbeaten record in Perth when he brought up his fifth win at Pinjarra last-start when defeating Marquisard on November 19. Mighty Conqueror posted four wins in a line before coming unstuck behind Ana Malak, running third in the Yes Loans 4YO Classic. “We are going to have good representation in the Nugget,” Gartrell said. “Bettor Aim, Mighty Conqueror and Ana Malak will be very competitive depending on the draws. “It gives us firepower in the race and we should be right in the cut up I would think.”   Julio Santarelli 

Tough mare Millview Sienna has caused one of the great Group 1 upsets in last night’s Mares Classic (2536m) at Gloucester Park, storming home to defeat classy mare Eden Franco. The barrier draw for the Group 1 event opened up the possibility for there to be an upset, after fancied runners Eden Franco and Maczaffair were dealt tricky draws. There was plenty of action in the early stages, as Our Angel Of Harlem and Eden Franco both tried to cross to the front, in doing so Chris Voak, driving Gotta Go Gobana, was left with a flat tyre. Eden Franco and Our Angel Of Harlem eventually were able to lead the field, as Millview Sienna settled three pairs back on the inside. Reinsman Aldo Cortopassi was able to get away from the inside on the back straight in the final lap and was able to set out after Eden Franco. Eden Franco appeared to have the race in her keeping 100m from the finish, but Millview Sienna produced a strong finishing burst to record her 11th victory from 45 starts. It was Cortopassi’s first Group 1 success, while it was a second win at the top level for trainer Ray Williams. Millview Sienna’s win kick-started what could be a huge weekend for the Williams family, with Ray’s son Grant, together with Grant’s wife Alana, saddling up the two favourites in the Kingston Town Classic at Ascot. Williams Snr said he had received great support from his son, who carved out a successful Harness Racing career prior to switching to the thoroughbreds. “I don’t think I’ve set the standard, but I hope it helps them,” he said. “I had a phone call from him when she crossed the line.” Williams Snr said he was hoping Millview Sienna would be able to figure in the finish and admitted the mare could be better than he gave her credit for. “The draw she got, I thought with a bit of luck she could hang in there and run in the first five,” he said. “When she won, I couldn’t believe it, I love the way she went to the line. “I suppose we have to start thinking a bit more positively with her now.” She Could Be Good, a $151 chance with TABtouch, finished third in the Group 1 event. Meanwhile, Jack Mac is in doubt for next week’s Group 1 Golden Nugget, after he pulled up sore from his win last night’s Nugget Prelude. Benhope Rulz loomed up to Jack Mac in the home straight and the favourite looked vulnerable for a fleeting moment. However, the Barry Howlett-trained pacer fought on to win by 2.5m. Lewis said it was likely to be just a foot abscess for Jack Mac, who now needs a vet certificate to race in next Friday’s four-year-old feature. “He did dip at the 300 as if he trod on something,” he said. “From then on, he was a little bit sore, so I pulled him up and got him checked out. “It was a good run, but there is just a query now.” In the other feature event of the night, Runrunjimmydunn and Vultan Tin dead-heated in the Free-For-All. Vultan Tin’s reinsman Chris Voak predicted a prosperous summer campaign ahead for the Phil Costello-trained pacer, after he finished fourth in last year’s Inter Dominion Final.   Tim Walker

Most members of the WA Trotting Media Guild expect classy four-year-old Jack Mac to make amends for his last-start sixth in the 4YO Championship when he steps out in the Golden Nugget Prelude (2130m) at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Veteran tipster Stuart Lowe, TABradio’s Matt Young and RWWA’s racing communications co-ordinator Tim Walker have all made the Barry Howlett-trained horse their best bet on the 10-event card. Lowe summed up the thoughts of his colleagues when he suggested punters should forgive Jack Mac for his first unplaced run on Australian soil. “My best bet is Jack Mac, who followed seven straight wins with an unplaced run here last week,” Lowe said. “He did  a power of work and faded to sixth  from barrier eight in that race. Well drawn here and should return to the winners’ list.” The West Australian’s Ernie Manning believes prolific winner Our Max Phactor can continue on his winning way. “Our Max Phactor appears set to continue a winning run when he switches back to a stand after three appearances in mobiles,” Manning said. “He has the imposing record of seven wins in nine races from standing starts and his overall WA tally is 10 victories from 11 races.” But GPTV’s Ken Casellas, who tipped nine winners last week, believes As Happy As Larry could cause an upset. “Our Max Phactor and Mr Mojito will be all the rage in the stand, but I aim to buck the odds by selecting the largely unheralded As Happy As Larry as my best bet on the program,” Casellas said. “The Robbie Williams-trained and driven seven-year-old has resumed racing after a spell in fine fashion and he is a reliable standing-start performer. As Happy As Larry excelled last Friday night when he raced three wide early before working hard in the breeze and fighting on grandly to be second to Mitch Maguire, with a final 800m in 56.3sec.” Longshot king Pat Harding believes classy mare Eden Franco will win the $125,000 Mares Classic (2536m), despite drawing wide. “After a great win two weeks ago, Eden Franco looks the goods in the main race,” Harding said. “Although drawing barrier nine, I am sure driver Colin Brown will have her well placed to come home like a train over the longer trip.” The West Australian’s racing co-ordinator Ryan Havercroft has labelled Machrie in the last race as his star bet. “Machrie took lengths off Luis Alberto late when they were both placed behind Free To Air two weeks ago,” Havercroft said. “He is racing well and will have the right run to figure again.” Budding racecaller Hayden King is a fan of Talktomeurmattjesty. “Talktomeurmattjesty is blessed with excellent gate speed and should zoom to the lead after the start,” King said. “From there he is one of - if not the class runner - the best in the line-up and will take no end of running down.” TABradio’s Matt McDermott has thrown out consistent mare Innocent Affair as his best. “She has enjoyed a good season thus far with four wins and four seconds from just 10 starts,” McDermott said. “Barrier two with her good gate speed means she’ll be there again fighting out the finish.” Guild president Wayne Currall, who shared the tipping honours last week with Ken when he jagged nine, believes punters can boost their bank early doors with The Art Form. “I thought he would come out running from his wide draw last week,” Currall said. “However, he may have been a tad underdone, but this week I’m expecting Mark Reed to set him alight from the get go and adopt catch-me-if-you-can tactics.” VALUE BETS Stuart: My value bet is Talktomeurmattjesty, who impressed when he did plenty of work before breezing and finishing fourth in a strong field last week. Looks well suited here. Matt Y: Mary Catherine is my throw at the stumps in the Group 1 Mares Classic. It will be a tactical affair and if she gets the right breaks she can surprise at big odds. Tim: Northern Emperor placed behind Bright Diamond last week, who could be in contention for a Nugget start next week. Looks like he should get a nice run through here and can play a big part in the finish once more. Ernie: Benhope Rulz is capable of bounding back into Golden Nugget calculations after unplaced runs at his past three starts. He struck interference in two of his recent races. Ken: For value, I suggest 10-year-old veteran Our Jimmy Johnstone in race six, in which he has the speed and strength to play a significant role. Pat: In race nine, fresh off a win, Free To Air from barrier one should give punters a good sight and I expect the two Christophers - trainer Chris King and driver Chris Voak - to prevail. Ryan: Costa Del Magnifico has begun well at his last two runs, both in standing-start events. He's an each-way prospect in a small field. Hayden: Mary Catherine has Gary Hall Jr aboard and has been racing deceptively well, although not in terms of numerical form. Can drop to the pegs and race three back in a high-pressure contest and cause a major boilover. Matt M: Maczaffair’s backline draw means we should get a better price and if the the race works out her way she can knock them off. Wayne: Heez About To Rock could secure a cushy run for master reinsman Chris Lewis behind expected leader Talktomeurmattjesty and could add value to the exotics. To view all of the Media Guild tips click here. Good Punting   Wayne Currall

Eight-year-old Machrie has turned the corner in the past few weeks with two eye-catching placings after a sequence of 15 unplaced efforts and the Chris King-trained gelding has sound prospects of ending a losing sequence of 32 when he starts from the coveted No. 1 barrier in the final event, the Westral Crimsafe Security Doors Pace over 1730m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Chris Voak is expected to be anxious to take full advantage of Machrie’s good gate speed in a bid to score an all-the-way win. Machrie is not a noted frontrunner, but he did lead from barrier one and win well from Hilo Rex over 2242m at Narrogin in March 2017. He was a $92 outsider two starts ago when he started from the inside of the back line and raced three back on the pegs in fifth position before running home strongly to be a one-length second to outstanding young mare Our Angel of Harlem. Then, he was a $29.20 chance from the outside barrier (No. 9) last Friday week when he raced in eighth position, four back on the pegs, before finishing powerfully, out wide, to be a close third behind Free To Air and Luis Alberto. One of Machrie’s main rivals is likely to be the somewhat disappointing Luis Alberto, who will be driven by Gary Hall jnr from the No. 2 barrier. Luis Alberto, who has a losing sequence of 13, has had 27 starts in WA for five wins and 13 placings. He has set the pace seven times in WA for three of his wins. However, he is generally regarded as a better prospect when held up for a late finishing burst. His was a sound effort last Friday night when he began out wide at barrier eight, settled in ninth and last position and sustained a strong three-wide last-lap burst to finish an 8m second to the pacemaker Beltane over 2130m. A week earlier Luis Alberto was tenth in the middle stages and sustained a three-wide run from the 1000m to take a narrow lead in the final 50m before wilting to finish second to the fast-finishing Free To Air, a stablemate of Machrie. Two of the better bets on the program should be The Art Form in the opening event, the Westral Roller Blinds Pace, and Jack Mac in the Westral Outdoor Patio Blinds Golden Nugget Prelude. The Art Form should have the class to overcome the disadvantage of starting out wide at barrier nine. He is sure to have derived considerable benefit from his solid second to the pacemaker Fizzing after working hard without cover throughout. Jack Mac, trained in Busselton by Barry Howlett, will have his final warm-up before contesting the Golden Nugget Championship the following Friday when he starts as the lone runner on the back line in the 2130m prelude. He resumed after a 25-day absence in the group 1 Yes Loans Four-Year-Old Classic last Friday night when he was at a disadvantage, starting from the outside barrier (No. 9). He covered extra ground in the first lap and moved into the breeze 1270m from home before wilting to sixth. Ken Casellas

Five-year-old New Zealand-bred gelding Simba Bromac boasts a winning record of 61 per cent and he has good prospects of making a successful return to racing after a spell when he starts from the No. 2 barrier in the $25,000 Westral Vertical and Panel Blinds Free-For-All at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He will be driven by Chris Lewis for Ravenswood trainer Nathan Turvey and should be prominent against stiff opposition from the three smart pacers from the Forrestdale stables of Greg and Skye Bond, Our Jimmy Johnstone, El Jacko and Rock Diamonds. Simba Bromac, whose 31 starts have produced 19 wins, six seconds and three thirds, warmed up for his first-up assignment in fine style with a dashing win over Chiaroscuro in a 2185m trial at Pinjarra last Sunday morning when he was not asked for an effort until the final stages when he sprinted over the final 400m in 27.7sec. This will be Simba Bromac’s first appearance since he began speedily from barrier seven, set the pace and sprinted over the final quarters in 27.9sec. and 27.3sec. to win by three lengths from Mitch Maguire at a 1.57 rate over 2130m on August 31. Ten-year-old Our Jimmy Johnstone, to be handled by Dylan Egerton-Green, still possesses excellent gate speed and a strong competitive attitude. He will begin from barrier four and looks set to fight out the finish. So, too, does the enigmatic, but highly talented El Jacko, who will be driven by Ryan Warwick from the coveted No. 1 barrier. El Jacko notched his 17th victory from 42 starts last Friday week when he started from the outside of the back line and charged to the front after 550m on his way to a stylish victory over Kimani. Turvey also holds a strong hand in the Westral Timber Blinds Pace in which he will be represented by the polemarker Livura and Carter Micheal at barrier two in the 2130m event. He will handle Carter Micheal and Chris Lewis will be in the sulky behind Livura. Lewis drove Livura to an effortless victory over Bad Round and El Machine, rating 1.57.3 over 2130 at Gloucester Park on Tuesday of last week. That ended a losing sequence of 16 and was the seven-year-old’s 20th win from 87 starts. Carter Micheal is racing with refreshing enthusiasm and looks hard to beat. He raced in seventh position on the pegs and was eighth 100m from the post before he sprinted fast to finish an eye-catching third behind Our Max Phactor over 2130m last Friday night. In what appears to be a highly competitive race, the Greg and Skye Bond-trained Saying Grace will have many admirers after winning at six of his past nine starts. He began off 40m and worked forward in the middle stages to race in the breeze when a close second to Carrera Mach over 2503m at Bunbury last Saturday night. He won easily at Kellerberrin and Pinjarra at his two previous outings.     Ken Casellas

In recent months Eden Franco and Maczaffair have stamped themselves as the best two pacing mares in Western Australia and the connections of those pacers and harness racing fans in general have been predicting a tantalising showdown between the two in the $125,000 Westral Mares Classic over 2536m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. But the result of the random barrier draw has clouded the issue and has revived the hopes of some of the other combatants, including the courageous Gotta Go Gabbana, the seasoned and well-performed veteran Tricky Styx and rising four-year-old stars Our Angel of Harlem and Lady De la Renta. Eden Franco, trained and driven by the evergreen Colin Brown, and Maczaffair, prepared by the equally astute horseman Mike Reed, have clashed in races only four times with the honours shared two victories to each mare and two seconds to Eden Franco and two fourths to Maczaffair. The barrier draw has thrown this week’s classic into the melting pot, with Eden Franco faring badly, drawn on the outside (No. 9) on the front line, while Maczaffair will start from the outside (barrier three) on the back line. Brown has a high opinion of Eden Franco and is looking for a change of luck after Eden Franco started from the prized No. 1 barrier in the Mares Classic 12 months ago and was a strongly-supported 4/1 chance. She set a solid pace, but was swamped in the final 100 metres when she was at a distinct disadvantage when the deafeners failed to release. She finished fourth behind Ideal Alice, Ameretto and Quite A Delight. Brown is hoping for his first success in the Mares Classic or its predecessor the Mares Mile. Three years ago, he drove $78.80 chance Jungle Jewell for Greg and Skye Bond when she surged home from ninth on the pegs at the bell, and sixth at the 100m, to finish second to the pacemaking Nike Franco and in 2010 he was third behind 10/9 on favourite Ima Spicey Lombo with Greg Bond’s Little Big Sister, who finished boldly from tenth at the bell. Eden Franco’s part-owner Jim Currie was a part-owner and trainer of 10/1 tote chance Smoking Again, who set the pace from barrier three and won comfortably from the polemarker Country Change in the 2009 Mares Mile. Eden Franco is generally considered simply as a frontrunner. But Brown does not agree with that, saying after driving the mare to a four-length victory over Alfa Queen in the 2130m Norms Daughter Classic last Friday week that she was quite versatile. “Everybody thinks that she’s just a one-trick pony, but at home she can run very quick times when held up. She’s got high cruising speed on the track at home and runs 27-second quarters hard-held.” Eden Franco started from barrier four in the Norms Daughter Classic and burst to the front after 250m. Maczaffair started from the inside of the back line and raced three back on the pegs in fifth position. She was badly blocked for a clear passage in the final stages and went to the line full of running to finish a most unlucky fourth. Then, last Friday night Maczaffair was a 10/1 on favourite from the No. 1 barrier when she was not extended in setting the pace, sprinting over the final quarters in 28.2sec. and 27.8sec. and winning by 10m from Gotta Go Gabbana over 2130m. Both Eden Franco and Maczaffair are capable over the 2536m journey. Eden Franco has won over 2600m and 2503m and Maczaffair has won twice and finished second three times over 2536m. Tricky Styx, now in the Capel stables of Andrew de Campo, has drawn the prized No. 1 barrier and Aiden de Campo is sure to attempt to set the pace with the seven-year-old and will be hoping to keep all challengers at bay. This will be Tricky Styx’s third appearance in the Mares Classic. She started out wide at barrier nine and finished solidly from 11th at the bell to be fifth behind The Parade in 2016 and last year she began out wide at barrier eight and was always well back, finishing tenth behind Ideal Alice. Four-year-old Our Angel of Harlem, a stablemate of Maczaffair, cannot be underestimated, even from the wide draw at No. 8. Her two runs since resuming from a spell have been encouraging and she will have the services of champion reinsman Chris Lewis, who has won the Mares Mile with Jilsander (2007) and Ima Spicey Lombo (2010). Chris Voak, who set the pace with the Chris King-trained Leda McNally and won the Mares Classic from Famous Alchemist and Sensational Gabby in 2013, will be in the sulky behind the Annie Belton-trained Gotta Go Gabbana, who is favourably drawn at barrier two on the front line. Gotta Go Gabbana has impressed with her courageous efforts on the past two Friday nights when she had a tough run in the breeze before fighting on grandly for a third behind Eden Franco and a second to Maczaffair. Gotta Go Gabbana’s stablemate Lady De La Renta will be driven by Kim Prentice and she impressed at Gloucester Park last Tuesday week when she unwound a powerful finishing burst to win easily from Shes Artful and Jasmin Amal.   Ken Casellas

Six-year-old Our Max Phactor arrived in Western Australia completely unheralded at the end of August and has been a revelation under the care of leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, with his 11 starts in the State producing ten wins and a close second placing. And this remarkable run of success follows his modest career in New Zealand where he managed just nine wins from 70 starts. He has also shown exceptional qualities here as a standing-start specialist, with six wins from six stands, whereas he had ten runs in stands in New Zealand for one victory by a nose over the marathon trip of 3150m on the grass track at the spacious Hawera circuit. Ryan Warwick, in dazzling form in the sulky, has driven Our Max Phactor in all his races for the Bond camp and he is hoping that the Art Major gelding will maintain his winning ways when he starts off 20m (virtually 10m because there are no runners off the front) in the Mount Eden-No Dill Christmas Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night. However, it is unlikely to be simply a walk in the park for Our Max Phactor, who will clash with other smart New Zealand-bred pacers in Mr Mojito and As Happy As Larry. Mr Mojito, to be driven by Chris Lewis for Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri, will start off 20m at his second appearance after a year’s absence. The six-year-old has raced only 28 times for 11 wins (seven in New Zealand, one in WA and three in Victoria). He resumed racing when he began off the 40m mark in a 2631m event at Pinjarra on Monday of last week when he moved forward in the first lap and then worked hard in the breeze before finishing an excellent first-up second to Saying Grace, with final quarters in 27.8sec. and 27.9sec. Mr Mojito was brought to Perth by ace New Zealand trainer-reinsman Mark Purdon at the end of 2016 when the gelding won the $50,000 Four-Year-Old Championship, beating Nathans Courage at a 1.56.2 rate over 2130m. A week later he was the 2/1 favourite in the Group 1 Golden Nugget, but wrecked his chances by hanging badly and he finished fifth behind Soho Tribeca, Nathans Courage, Chicago Bull and Natural Disaster. Victorian trainer-driver Kerryn Manning brought Mr Mojito to Perth late last year to contest the Inter Dominion Championship series in which he was unplaced in three heats. He has spent the past year in rehabilitation with Olivieri and he has the class to seriously test Our Max Phactor on Friday night. Seven-year-old As Happy As Larry is prepared and driven by Robbie Williams and he has been impressive in four outings since resuming from a spell. He raced wide in the early stages and then had a tough passage in the breeze when a fighting second to Mitch Maguire in a 2503m stand last Friday night. Ken Casellas

The Pinjarra Trotting Club was formed in 1950 and held its first race-meeting in Pinjarra on 10th March 1954 after conducting a couple of early meetings at Harvey. After last Monday’s meeting there have been some 10952 races decided at the Pinjarra club with 6548 individual winners trained by 1298 individual trainers and driven by 890 individual drivers. Ray Grantham with 101 Pinjarra winners as a trainer is the leading Pinjarra based trainer with the Young twins Kim (132) and Shane (104) are the only Pinjarra based drivers to top the ton at the track.  Morgan Woodley, who was raised in nearby Waroona, has driven 245 winners at Pinjarra while Nathan Turvey, who has moved to Pinjarra in the past year, has driver 145 winners at the track. Initially the track was located at what is now Sir Ross McLarty Park in Lovegrove Street but an increase in rental to race there made it unviable. In 1957 the club purchased 34 acres of Blythewood Estate at the corner of Greenlands Road and South Western Highway and works began on the new course in 1959. At the suggestion of then WA Trotting Association President J P Stratton it was decided to build a half-mile 800 metre triangular shaped track based on the design of the Redcliffe track in Queensland. The foundations of the track were laid in 1963 and by 1965 the surface was ready for trackwork although there was still a considerable amount of work required before fencing, lighting and other amenities could be completed. There was no Racecourse Development Trust in 1965 and the best that the WA TAB could offer was a $30,000 loan over a period of 20 years which was used along with debentures of between $20,000 and $50,000 to finance the completion of the course. Even with the financing there was still an enormous amount of donations and volunteer work involved to construct an administration building, parade ring, stables, toilets, switch-room and parking areas. There were donations of galvanized iron for fences while Hawker Siddeley donated a large supply of bricks and eventually the track and facilities were completed in time for the first race-meeting on 16th October 1968. Fittingly the first race on the track was won by a local in John Blackburn with King Brazen. John Blackburn will be a guest of the club next Monday. For the record the last meeting on the original track in Lovegrove Street was on 2nd May 1968 and Hall Of Fame inductee Jim Schrader drove four of the six winners. Jim Schrader is one of 22 drivers to have driven 100 or more winners at the Pinjarra track. A further two meetings were held on the new track before the official opening of the venue on 11th December 1968 where, for the record, the winners were; Pinjarra – 11th December 1968 Trainer Driver Winner Owner R W (Ron) Beresford N T (Noel) Eddy Wee Darlin R W Beresford D A (Denis) Richards D A (Denis) Richards Hi Toby L J Richards, B J Richards W (Bill) Warwick T B (Trevor) Warwick Heather Bay D Friedman L H (Les) Poyser L H (Les) Poyser Cygnet Sea L Baldwin W H (Bill) & R H (Bob) Godecke W H (Bill) Godecke Renaud W H Godecke, R H Godecke R J (Raymond) Green G R (Gary) Lilleyman Lady Alfreda R C Meotti T G (Trevor) Scoby-Smith T G (Trevor) Scoby-Smith Colonel James T G Scoby-Smith In 1982 committeeman Fred Grantham first mooted the idea of converting the triangular track to a 1000 metre circuit but nothing eventuated. In 1988 Pinjarra club stalwart Roy Adam suggested that the club ought to have a feasibility study done to ascertain the design and costings to construct a 1000 metre track to replace the 1968 triangular design. Application was made and in March 1990 the Racecourse Development Trust approved a grant of $375,000 to construct the present-day 1000 metre circuit. At around the same time the Pinjarra Club requested that it be allocated 28 Monday afternoon fixtures and after approval the light poles around the 800 metre circuit. Construction of the new 1000 metre track was undertaken while meetings were still being held on the original circuit and, acting on a suggestion by Roy Adam, the new track featured European style flexi-poles in lieu of an inside running rail. Eventually the club was able to convince the stewards to approve the concept and Pinjarra was the first club in Australia to feature the flexi-poles that are now seen on every harness track in the country. The 1000 metre circuit was officially opened on 26th November 1990 by local MLA Keith Read and the first race on the new track was won by the filly Enlightened for trainer Kevin Keys and driver Jason Keys. As with the first meeting on the “old” triangular track in 1968 the first race on the day was sponsored by the McLarty family of Blythewood. Over the 65 years that the Pinjarra Trotting Club (now Pinjarra Harness Racing Club) has been operating they have been innovators and among the notable firsts at Pinjarra have been First club to run races specifically for 2yos (1956 Sapling Stakes raced in divisions and won by Prince Malcolm and Nelsons Boy) First country club to use a mobile barrier to start races (1958) First club in Western Australia to use head numbers (1960) First 1000 metre track in Western Australia (1990) First track in Australia to use flexi-poles in lieu of a running rail First modern track construction to come in under budget with $63,000 returned to the Racecourse Development Trust for use by other clubs.   Alan Parker

Impressive four-year-old Ana Malak has withstood a number of challenges from a star-studded field to hold on and win the Group 1 Yes Loans 4YO Classic (2130m) at Gloucester Park. Ana Malak, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, was having just his second start in Western Australia last night and was able to hold the front from barrier one for reinsman Ryan Warwick. Jack Mac eventually made his move to sit outside the leader with 1200m to go, while the unbeaten Ideal Liner was three pairs back along the inside. Ideal Liner was eventually able to get away from the inside coming to the home turn to give chase to Ana Malak, but the Gary Hall Snr-trained pacer fell short by a head. Mighty Conqueror, another runner from the Bond stable finished third, while Ideal Liner’s stablemate Benhope Rulz was fourth. Warwick said Ana Malak was still learning his craft and would continue to improve with racing. “He was very credible,” he said. “He was off the bit and on the bit. “He was probably doing a bit wrong and he nearly cost himself on the line. “I’m sure there’s more motor then what you saw tonight but he probably doesn’t know how to use it properly.” Winning owner Rob Gartrell paid tribute to the Bond team, who recorded their first success in the $125,000 feature last night. “I haven’t been so nervous for a long time,” he said. “Ryan was really confident we could lead, I was hopeful. “Skye has done a magnificent job, she does a lot of the work with him. “That’s one of the great four-year-old fields.” Of the beaten brigade, reinsman Mark Reed said he was impressed with Golden State’s sharp form turnaround to finish fifth, while Chris Lewis said Jack Mac would take plenty of benefit from his sixth placing heading towards the Golden Nugget on December 14. Ana Malak was one of five winners on the night for the Bond stable and Ryan Warwick. Earlier in the night they teamed up to win the We Say Yes To Commercial Loans Pace (2130m) with Our Max Phactor. Following Ana Malak’s win, Mitch Maguire, Fizzing and Bright Diamond all recorded impressive wins. Fizzing and Bright Diamond were emergencies for the Group 1 feature on the night, but both put forward compelling cases to be included in the field for the Golden Nugget. Mitch Maguire was driven patiently in the standing start event of the evening, before he stormed over the top late to record a win that led to Gartrell describing him as the “fastest horse he had.” The Bond, Warwick and Gartrell combination will be hoping their successful Friday night can transition to Bunbury tonight with Vampiro in the Bunbury Cup, while they also have Galactic Star in Melbourne ahead of the opening night of Inter Dominion heats. Meanwhile, Maczaffair has stamped herself as one of two key contenders for next week’s Group 1 Mares Classic, taking out the $30,000 Howard Porter Memorial for the Mike Reed stable. Mark Reed said there was nothing between Maczaffair and last week’s Norms Daughter winner Eden Franco.   Tim Walker

Trainer Mike Reed admits he has been puzzled by smart pacer Golden State’s drop in form over the past month, as he looks to rediscover it ahead of tomorrow night’s Group 1 Yes Loans 4YO Classic (2130m) at Gloucester Park. Golden State finished at the tail of the field in the 4YO Championship a fortnight ago, beaten 40m by Mighty Conqueror. Reed has again made changes to Golden State’s gear and said he had made adjustments to his work during the week. “I haven’t hobbled him this week, I did that on Saturday,” he said. “We gave him a gallop on Tuesday and he worked well. “I don’t know what’s gone wrong with him, he’s eating well. “His work has been good on the track, he’s been blowing Bechers Brook and Maczaffair away.” Golden State has drawn barrier four for the feature event tomorrow night, with Reed’s son Mark to again take the drive. Reed said he hoped Golden State would be driven positively at the start and felt race favourite Ana Malak could be crossed in barrier one. Reed also has Bechers Brook engaged in the $125,000 event, with Shannon Suvaljko to take the drive from barrier 12. VIEW TABTOUCH'S 4YO CLASSIC MARKET HERE Bechers Brook is rated a $34 chance with TABtouch and Reed said the son of Somebeachsomewhere would need the race to be run truly for him to be in the finish. “We probably have to play for luck with him,” he said. “We have to hope the speed is on and if that’s the case he will be coming home strong. “I have told Shannon to be patient with him tomorrow night. “Whatever he does tomorrow night, he will improve on for the Nugget.” Arguably Reed’s best chance of the night comes up in the $30,000 Howard Porter Memorial (2130m), with star mare Maczaffair rated a $1.14 chance with TABtouch. Maczaffair was an unlucky fourth to Eden Franco at Group 2 level last week, but has drawn barrier one tomorrow night and Reed said he expected the mare the bounce back. “She’s flying,” he said. “She worked home in 55.3 on Wednesday and she was bolting. “We won’t be handing up to anyone tomorrow night.” Reed said Maczaffair would progress to the Group 1 Mares Classic next week, as would Our Angel Of Harlem, following her second placing last week.   Tim Walker

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