Light shines through for Bond
Heavier shoes on the front hooves were the key to Tinted Light winning the Zilco Products Trot at Ascot Park yesterday.
The lightly-raced Tinted Light had been pacing away in races, prompting Mataura trainer Jim Bond to change the mare's shoes. She qualified as a pacer but never raced in that role for Rakaia horseman Michael Heenan. Bond's son, Lyndon, organised a group of friends to lease Tinted Light about five months ago.
''When she came down, all she wanted to do was trot,'' Jim Bond said.
The 5-year-old qualified as a trotter in 3min 16.1sec (2400m mobile) at Winton in November and recorded one placing from four starts before yesterday's success. Tinted Light was a surprise favourite and wound up 1/8 in the betting yesterday.
Coolest Easton, who is related to Freeway Don (11 NZ wins, Hannon Memorial) and Kenwood Don (five NZ wins, 1:52.2,US) won the Envious Photography Pace by a comfortable three and a-half lengths.
Constellation Easton, a brother by Washington VC to Coolest Easton, has won nine races and A$62,000 in West Australia. Both horses were bred by Tahakopa horseman Brian Norman.
He owns and trains Coolest Easton, who will be turned out for a short break if he is not sold.
A one-win junior drivers' race at Wyndham on Sunday week is next for Gambler's Dream after he won the CUE TV Pace yesterday.
Makarewa trainer and part-owner Chris Morley took the murphy blind off because the gelding had not been getting a clear view of other horses challenging in the straight. Gambler's Dream served notice of his readiness to win when finishing fourth at Wyndham eight days ago.
His dam, She's A Gamble won three races for Morley, but could have won more if a knee injury had not halted her career. She is in foal to Gambler's Dream's sire, Washington VC, and the dam of a 2-year-old by the same sire.
Hold All Tickets, winner of the Book Your Cup Day Mini Marquee Now Pace, is owned in Peter Hunter's Ryal Bush stable by Malcolm and Janet Pennack, of Christchurch. Mr Pennack gained seven wins with the Hunter-trained Elation Franco from March, 2009, to August, 2011.
Itsnewstome (four NZ wins) is now in training with Victoria's Glen Douglas after being bought out of Hunter's stable.
Four-year-old trotter Starlight Invasion triumphed in the Elwood Catering Handicap Trot and will be back at Ascot Park on Saturday for the Invercargill Cup meeting.
Having to drag a flat tyre from the 1200m added merit to Starlight Invasion's win yesterday. Myross Bush trainer and part-owner Doug McLachlan freshened Starlight Invasion after her sixth at Winton on December 29.
Yesterday's win was her second in eight starts. Stablemate Bettor's Brigadier is one of nine runners for the $40,000 Invercargill Cup on Saturday. He raced with a broken chin rest in the Northern Southland Cup on Thursday night.
Four Starzzz Flash, who won the Central Otago Cup at Omakau on January 2, bypassed the southern cups this month for a Melbourne campaign.
He is racing in The Pure Steel at Ballarat on Friday night as a lead into the A$400,000 Hunter Cup at Melton eight night's later.
Mark Purdon-trained Highview Tommy is also starting in The Pure Steel. Heats of the Australasian Trotters' Championship are to be held on the same Ballarat programme, with Kiwi squaregaiters Dr Hook and Vulcan meeting in the second heat.
New Zealand-trained 3-year-olds contesting heats of the Victoria Derby at Melton on Saturday are Three Pints, Bit Of A Legend, Arden Rooney and Ohoka Punter.
- The Southland Times