BRING on Round Three!
There is a horse that ain’t too frightened of the mighty Tiger Tara . . . and his name is Thefixer.
The New Zealand Cup winner darted up on the rails to beat Tiger Tara in November’s New Zealand Cup and the Kiwi star, with star reinswoman Natalie Rasmussen aboard, was at it again at Menangle tonight winning the Allied Express Sprint, the first of two qualifying races for the Miracle Mile.
Thefixer had to earn his stripes, coming from one-out and one-back to register another victory over Australia’s best pacer, nabbing Tiger Tara right on the nine to score by a head in a 1:50.7 mile rate.
While Tiger Tara will be revved up and ready for next week’s return bout in the Ainsworth Miracle Mile, it was the way that Thefixer found the line which will have harness fans assured that next week’s $1m Group One is anything but a one-horse race.
Taken straight to the front by Todd McCarthy at the start from the inside barrier, it was expected to be a cakewalk for Tiger Tara, chasing his sixth win in succession.
After a 28.1s first split of the mile, Todd was able to back off the speed with a 29.5 second split, suggesting the son of Bettors Delight would have too much pace in the run home.
The speed went on with a 26.9 third split and as they dashed home in 26.2 Thefixer came with a dash and knuckled down over the last 100m to score by a head from ‘The Tiger’, with Cash N Flow (Luke McCarthy) one and three-quarter metres back in third place. The winner’s stablemate Ashley Locaz was a close fourth.
The second Sprint, the Canadian Club Sprint saw an upset right from the start when Kevin Pizzuto’s other big hope Majordan bombed the start, losing almost 100m before finishing well out of the placings.
The race went to New Zealand’s No.1 stable, the All Stars, with Mark Purdon spearing Spankem straight to the front and leading all the way for an impressive victory.
With little mid-race pressure, Purdon was able to back off the speed after a 26.1s first split with a 30.4 second quarter and a third split of just 29.4.
That enabled the Bettors Delight four-year-old to dash home in 25.6s for a 1:51.5 mile rate in defeating outsider My Alpha Rock (Lauren Tritton) and the winner’s stablemate Cruz Bromac (Natalie Rasmussen).
That meant six of the eight spots in the Miracle Mile were decided with Club Menangle directors heading into conference to decide the rest of the field.
Those already qualified were Newcastle Mile winner Yayas Hot Spot, Chariots Of Fire winner Poster Boy and the first two home in the two sprints, Thefixer and Tiger Tara, Spankem and My Alpha Rock.
FOR MORE INFORMATION TELEPHONE CLUB MENANGLE RACING MANAGER DAVID WONSON ON 0438-398-251.