New Season Promises To Deliver Some Memorable Racing

Manukau hosted the first meeting of the new season and also saw the emergence of a new training partnership. Tracey and Lisa Craik have taken over the reins from their father Ben, after a long training career producing a number of group winners. Rasmah, Harajuku Boy and Snicko were some of the really big performers and no doubt kennel legends. The litter out of Simple and Plain looks to be full of talent with Portland Berty nearly breaking the track record at Cambridge and Portland Wonder winning the C5 sprint in a very impressive 18.25 on Sunday. It is great to see the Craik sisters carry on from where their father left off.

Zipping Sarah finally delivered on her early promise after coming from across the ditch. The Angela Turnwald-trained bitch landed herself in a handy early position and ran away from her challengers late in the piece, recording her second victory in New Zealand, both coming at Manawatu Raceway. Big Time Angel was a very convincing winner in the C5 sprint on the same card with another lightning-quick display. The Manawatu track record holder who seems to relish her home track pounced on the early lead and ran away with a 23.06 best on day time. She now has four sub 23.10 runs on the track, a feat that will be tough to match.

Thursday at Cambridge saw Lisa Cole dominate the high-grade races with Trojan Hoarse and Bigtime Cooper both winning in very nice times. Trojan Hoarse used his box speed to great effect defeating kennel mate Bigtime Kiss in a slashing 20.87 for the 375m. Bigtime Cooper seems to be back to his brilliant best after sustaining a potentially career-ending injury. His box speed is unmatched on the one turn tracks at the moment and his time of 25.40 suggests his injury has had little impact on his ability to produce devastating early sectionals. It was good to see Group One winner Thrilling Talk come back into form with a gutsy second to Cooper in the same race for Karen Walsh. Both dogs have had their share of injury troubles and it’s encouraging to see them return to racing.

Addington Raceway in Christchurch hosted the meeting of the week with some very nice sprint and middle distance heats. The Active Electrical Christchurch Futurity Sprint Heats were stacked with some very talented puppies. Mitcham Pru for Ashley Bradshaw and Nassor for Bruce Dann took out their respective heats, while Daniel Lane’s rising superstars Bolty and Seve never looked in much doubt in their heats. Bolty demonstrated his freakish turn of foot once again in a best on night 16.93 run. Seve lived up to his favouritism in his heat winning in a 17.21. This week’s final sure looks to be an exciting one as Bolty and Seve will line up against each other and it won’t be any surprise if they both contest for the lead at some stage of the race. Daniel Lane also has a strong hand in the Fitz Sports Bar Futurity final over the 520m with another star in Ozzie. The Mini’s Fantasy flyer set the bar high with a super 30.01 overall time. Jean and Dave Fahey will play a big hand in the final with Opawa Slick who lead all the way in his heat and the improving Viking Mafia who ran down a strong bitch in Opawa Cutie. A very encouraging run from Pepper Chimes for John Allen in his first look on the track under race night conditions will see him right in contention in this week’s final as well.

Friday night at Hatrick Raceway saw the rise of Big Time Jonie continue. His best on night 17.27 for the 305m journey was never in doubt as he flew out of box 8 for a dominant victory. The C5 middle distance on the night was a cracker despite a six dog field. Big Time Lantao for Lisa Cole speared to an early lead and when stalked by Bigtime Rod she dug deep late holding him out by a head in a time of 30.29. She has now won 10 of her first 14 career starts and looks to show real promise.

Written by Shane Kendall

Posted on 10 August 2020

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