PGG Wrightson Harness 7000 Mobile Pace
One of the most exciting races on the racing calendar, the Harness 7000. The whole idea for this race is you are only eligible if your sire you use is worth under $7000 and you haven’t one a Group 1 or race worth more than $100,000. This really leaves an open playing field if you can’t afford to breed to the elite sires.
This year’s race was hugely exciting on the 5-star race night at Addington, taken out impressively by Eureka, trained by Grant Payne and driven by Sam Ottley. With the host of owners there to cheer him on this was great watching and even better in the close finish when the owners were making plenty of noise.
PGG Wrightson NZ Yearling Sales Series Fillies 3yo Final
Not very often do you win both the 2yo and 3yo Yearling Sales final but this year Havtime showed it can be done. She run a huge race and won it quite convincingly taking her career earning to over $200,000 and only winning 2 races to date (both finals). What was even more exciting was for owners Malcolm and Sandra Little whom had 4 horses in the race, 2 part owned with Havtime Breeding, I liked their chances to win the race and they even ran the quinella. What a great filly they have here, I am sure they will enjoy her racing career and then they will have a great broodmare moving forwards.
PGG Wrightson NZ Standardbred Breeders Stakes (Group 1)To wrap up a big night of racing and sponsorship for PGG Wrightson Standardbred, we finished with the Group 1 Breeders Stakes. This was a tidy field as per usual at the top level with one horse in the twilight of her career, Dream About Me, could she do it? Well she did it alright, simply far too good for them and another Group 1 being added. Owners Charlie Roberts and Paul and Mary Kenny were just over the moon, taking her stakes earning to over $1,000,000 which is unreal.
PGG Wrightson NZ Yearling Sales 3yo Trot Final
The Williamson boys sure know how to drive a trotter and Brad drove a strong race not handing up to Mark Purdon on Cheerful. Get Lucky turned for home and never looked like getting beaten, and wow could I hear the Southlanders cheering for this one! Trainer Alister Black is having his best season of his career and its not looking like stopping anytime soon. Also, the Thomson’s who own Get Lucky are also having a dream season as both him and Vintage Cheddar who they bred are on fire. I had a good talk to them after the race about Get Lucky and they really had a good eye on him at the sales. Even though he was by a new sire, this didn’t put them off and what a decision this was, they will have a lot of fun with this guy going forward.
PGG Wrightson NZ Yearling Sale 2yo Fillies Final
Amazing Dream topped off an amazing season’s racing for the PGG Wrightson Yearling Sales Series. In a 1.54-mile rate, Amazing Dream showed her class to run away by 3 ½ lengths over a solid field of fillies. This is another great purchase by Jean Feiss who made the trip over from Australia to watch this filly. I am sure they will have fun going towards the harness jewels and this race today would have her going close to winning that so best of luck going forwards to that.
PGG Wrightson NZ Yearling Sale 2yo Trot Final
Not only did we see a professional performance by Ultimate Stride to win this year’s 2yo Trot Final, but we also witnessed the 1980m 2yo mobile record being beaten. Owners Emilio and Mary Rosati couldn’t have been happier, this was Mary’s pick as a yearling, so she has the bragging rights for this one. Phil Williamson training another good trotter in the making with oldest sun in the cart, Nathan. I am sure everyone will be excited moving forward to the harness jewels, if they can keep up the record setting then they may find themselves in a brilliant position and get the jewels.
PGG Wrightson Standardbred is offering a unique opportunity for breeders to sell their yearlings in 2020 through bidr®. With changes in the market occurring in the last year, PGG Wrightson Standardbred believe bidr® offers a fresh, modern approach to selling yearlings in its inaugural February 2020 online sale.
PGG Wrightson NZ Yearling Sales 2yo Open Final
Always a fabulous race to watch the 2yo open final and again, did we have a race on our hands here. Smooth Deal for owner Jean Feiss looking the likely winner but there was a new horse to the ranks whom was unbeaten looking to change this, One Change. One of the tightest finishes I have seen but One Change pipped Smooth Deal on the line, coming from well back in a 55.9 quarter which is seldomly done in those times. This was now 3 from 3 for One Change and it has won each race by only a nose! This horse has really surprised the trainers, as initially they weren’t a big fan, but he really has put it together race day and for the connections Allstars Racing Stables Limited, M R Woodlock and T Casey they couldn’t be happier.
PGG Wrightson Standardbred / Team Teal Trot
Grass roots racing is a huge part of Harness Racing and PGG Wrightson has always acknowledged this. Geraldine put on a great day out at the races, much better than the November meeting where it decided to rain all day. PGG Wrightson Standardbred teamed up with Team Teal to sponsor the second race and this was taken out by Baxter beautifully driven by Ricky May and trained by Greg and Nina Hope. Team Teal is now a huge part of racing throughout February and is really starting to gain some traction and we are glad we could be apart of this.
PGG Wrightson Standardbred Division Mobile Pace
Hororata Trotting Club really knows how to turn on the weather for its once yearly meeting held at Methven Racecourse. There were good numbers out enjoying the day, food and racing experience that is always shown in Methven. The PGG Wrightson Standardbred race was a good story to tell, Tabitha Franco trained by local legend Terry May and driven by Ricky May had been hunting for that elusive victory and today was the day this happened. The connections were thrilled and it was great to have a chat and let them enjoy this moment, to me this is what Harness Racing is all about, having fun with your friends and hopefully picking up the odd win along the way.
PGG Wrightson Aged Classic Handicap Pace
It was a cooler day in Kaikoura but as per usual there was a big crowd and some great racing. Henry Hubert took out this seasons PGG Wrightson Aged Classic, this was a great display of both toughness and how good of a horse he is. He started off the 10m mark and held out some strong competition from All U Need Is Faith and Cullenburn. Owner Ross Gordon seems to have himself another very handy horse on board and he was wrapped with the result.