Jackfrost, winner of his last two starts, has been assigned the $40,000 race for 3-year-olds at New Plymouth on Saturday.
He is raced by Murray Scott, of Kingston, Tom Treacy, of Christchurch, Michael House, the West Melton harness trainer and studmaster; Wellington trio, Keith Gibson (standardbred breeder), David Wallis and Ron Dixon from the Foxton stable of David Haworth.
The group have won five races with the trotter, Duchess Diedre.
''Keith set up the syndicate with his friends to race one really well bred trotter and thoroughbred,'' House said.
Gibson bred Duchess Diedre, who was bought back for $22,500 at the 2011 premier yearling sale. She is by Monarchy and the first foal of Dear Diedre, a winning sister to Diedre Don, who numbered a New Zealand Trotting Championship and two Canterbury Park Trotting Cups among his 18 wins.
''I qualified Duchess Diedre and gave her three starts for a fourth but she was much better going the right-handed way so we sent her to Tony Herlihy,'' House said.
Monarchy stands alongside champion sire of trotters, Sundon at Roydon Lodge which House operates on lease from Gibson. Roydon Lodge was founded by Sir John McKenzie in 1928 and continued by his son, Sir Roy McKenzie.
''Sundon [now 28] is in semi-retirement but we have plenty of his frozen semen,'' House said.
Jackfrost is a replacement for a Perfectly Ready thoroughbred filly who was tried by the syndicate. He was bought cheaply this season when Tauranga owner Phil Bayly did not wish to continue with the Gallant Guru-Vital Note gelding.
Jackfrost had a fourth from three starts in the spring. He resumed racing with a maiden win over 1600m at Tauherenikau on a dead track on June 2 when tried in blinkers. He followed up with a win over the same distance at Awapuni on July 3 in heavy footing.
He will be ridden on Saturday by Jonathan Parkes, who rode him at Tauherenikau. The distance is again 1600m.
Bayly had bought Jackfrost privately as a yearling from Brian and Lorraine Anderton, of White Robe Lodge. Vital Note was an unraced mare by Yamanin Vital. She was out of Sound Note, by Sound Reason from Ararat Note (Kurdistan-Fair Note), a sister to the 1970 Melbourne Cup winner, Baghdad Note, who was trained at Wingatui stable by Bob Heasley.
Jackfrost is a grey like his dam and Baghdad Note.
Dixon and Wallis used funds provided by Kings Deep to purchase Jackfrost. Kings Deep was passed on to Hastings trainer Paul Nelson for jumping after a win on the flat for Roger James and Paul Mirabelli and a placing for Haworth. Kings Deep has won hurdle races at Riccarton (two) and Ellerslie and his former owners had an arrangement to receive part of the proceeds.
Coat Of Arms is the highest rated horse nominated for the $25,000 Oamaru Cup (1600m) on Sunday. The Sabin Kirkland owned and trained Coat Of Arms won the Amberley Cup (1600m) at his last start on July 5. Coat Of Arms ran fourth behind Miss Maximus in the Oamaru Cup last year.
- The Southland Times