TRAINER Tony Stratford has decided to bypass Cup Week with his star pacer Pulp Fiction and set him for southern cups over the summer.
The Art Major four-year-old put in a big run for third in the $50,000 PGG Wrightson Yearling Sales Series Aged Pace at Kaikoura on 02 November. He made a couple of uncharacteristic mistakes — shortly after the start and again when being restrained after challenging the winner Alta Orlando for the lead with a round to go — that probably cost him the race.
“I think if Mark Purdon (on Alta Orlando) hadn’t known we’d broken earlier on, he would have handed up and we would probably have won,” Tony says.
Pulp Fiction has come through the race well but Tony has decided against a start in the Junior Free-For-All on Cup Day where he would be up against the likes of Have Faith In Me. Instead he’ll be set for the Gore Cup just after Christmas before tackling the Central Otago Cup at Omakau and the other cup races in Invercargill.
The entire is owned by Tony’s uncle, Alan Steel, of Gore, along with his son Raymond and his other son Chris’s partner Sally McCann. They turned down huge money for Pulp Fiction because they’re enjoying racing him so much.
Tony’s not planning to take Pulp Fiction to Auckland for the big four-year-old features later in the season with the long-term aim to be in Christchurch this time next year — for the New Zealand Trotting Cup.
THE CUMMINGS family of Lawrence have announced they’re winding down their stud business, Tuapeka Lodge, and selling most of their broodmare band.
Of the 10 mares for sale — all based at Macca Lodge — six have already been sold.
“It’s a bit sad but after 50 years the time has come for Tuapeka Lodge to wind down,” the Cummings say on their website. “We don’t intend to give up completely but to cut back to two or three mares and keep a hobby going for a few more years.
“We’re all getting older and Dan has just found out he has to have open heart surgery after Christmas. Unfortunately there aren’t any young ones in the family who wish to carry on the stud at this stage so now (suddenly) is a good time to wind down.”
The mares sold so far are Sumtala (Bettor’s Delight-Spring Thaw); Raconteur (Bettor’s Delight-Letatalk), whose first live foal, Talkerup, qualified brilliantly in Canterbury this week; Raindowne (Life-Sign-Tuapeka Tango); Lillian (Falcon Seelster-Marsa Star); Hit The Spot (Bettor’s Delight-Tuapeka Christa); and Real Wings (Badlands Hanover-Tuapeka Wings).
Others still for sale are Gracy Lady (Christian Cullen-Spring Thaw), Tango Lady (Artsplace-Tuapeka Tango), Atom Queen (Soky’s Atom-Maureen’s Dream) and Tuapeka Christie (Christian Cullen-Tuapeka Frost).
All the details are on the Tuapeka Lodge website.
FOOTNOTE: The mares have now all been sold.
IT’S ALL SYSTEMS GO for Show Day with Bonnie’s Khaleesi after her win at the Riverton meeting at Invercargill on 01 November.
The four-year-old Live Or Die mare will represent Macca Lodge in the race they sponsor at Addington on 13 November, the Trained South of the Waitaki race for C1 and C2 pacers.
Junior driver Craig Ferguson managed to get Bonnie’s Khaleesi into the one-one from her second line draw over the 1700-metre mobile. She was up to dispute the pace with the favourite Isola Bella before the turn and held off the late run of Dana Dynasty by half a length, rating 1:58.8 for the sprint distance.
This was the first winning run for a horse in the new Macca Lodge colours. And making the result better was the fact that it was penalty-free for owners Brent and Sheree McIntyre and Wally and Jan Nelson
Take a look here at Bonnie’s Khaleesi winning in the new Macca Lodge colours