Racing: Aussie trainers dodge All Stars bullets

By Michael Guerin

Dream About Me, from the group one winning trio. Photo / Stuart McCormick
Dream About Me, from the group one winning trio. Photo / Stuart McCormick

All over Australia trainers of 3-year-old pacing fillies are wondering how they got so lucky.

Because they are going to dodge the near unbeatable group one force that is the All Stars attack on the winter riches in Victoria.

The all-conquering stable has completed their now annual Jewels review, which consists of dividing their Jewels starters into two camps - those who will head to Australia for the Breeders Crown and those who will go for a spell.

And the results are surprising, especially with group one winning trio Dream About Me, Piccadilly Princess and Golden Goddess all heading to the paddock.

Trainers Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen believe they are better off there, strengthening up for next season, so will have only have fourth-stringer My McKenzie, who is already in NSW as their 3-year-old filly flag bearer.

Almost as surprising is juvenile of the year More The Better going for a spell, rather than the A$322,000 Breeders Crown on August 28 for which he would be the favourite.

Both he and Jewels quinellamate Ultimate Machete are finished for the season but luckless Jewels placegetter Pacing Major will head to Victoria after contesting his Breeders Crown heat here.

"More The Better could have a long Derby season next year so the break will do him good while we see Pacing Major as a natural 2-year-old," said Rasmussen.

Stable newcomer Custodian will be part of the Australian winter team along with Partyon, who heads to the Breeders Crown after also racing in what could be a walkover heat here. Juvenile filly of the year certainty Spanish Armada heads for a break.

Heaven Rocks, who paced the fastest mile on Saturday, is eligible for the Vicbred series that starts this week but will instead be kept for the Breeders Crown, with the stable believing a trip away may help him mature.

But as good as Heaven Rocks is he won't be favourite for his division as the All Stars also have Waikiki Beach in Sydney contesting the Breeders Challenge before he heads to Victoria to defend his Breeders Crown title.

Waikiki Beach will seek his 20th straight win at Menangle on Saturday week.

Champion 3-year-old trotter Marcoola's connections have pulled the pin on a NSW and Victoria Trotting Derby tilt and he will head to the paddock.

Also changing tack is $2.4 million earner Christen Me, who was originally scheduled to take on Lennytheshark in the Len Smith Mile at Menangle on June 26 but will instead head straight to the Queensland winter carnival. He is chasing a special $50,000 bonus there for any pacer who can win three races on end culminating in the A$200,000 Blacks A Fake on July 16.

- NZ Herald

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