John Dunn has some encouraging words for punters playing harness racing's trickiest game in tomorrow's $270,000 Majestic Son Dominion at Addington.
The game is called "Guess what mood Sundees Son is in" and driver and part-time trainer Dunn is guessing his stable star is in exactly the mood he needs to be.
If Dunn is right then Sundees Son should win the great trot race.
Sundees Son is the Jekyll and Hyde of New Zealand trotting, almost unbeatable when trotting smoothly but a frustrating, money-munching madman when he isn't quite right, whether that be mentally or physically.
As good as many in the field are, the Sundees Son of two and three starts ago could put three lengths on most of them because he simply has too much speed.
But those considering taking the $2 fixed odds might feel nervous about how Sundees Son galloped on the home bend on his way to finishing fifth at Kaikoura last week, raising concerns he's back up to his old tricks.
Dunn says punters can rest assured, it was his fault more than the horse's last week.
"Sure the flat track didn't help but I actually clicked him up and asked him to go too early," says Dunn.
"I got him up on the steel down the back straight and he started trucking and then a horse in front of him galloped and I had to pull him sideways and he galloped.
"It really wasn't his fault and prior to that he had been going great.
"He feels like he is in a really good place to me and if he is happy going into the race so am I," says Dunn, whose father Robert trains Sundees Son.
Dunn is also happy with Sundees Son's draw, being wide on the front line and coming up late so not having to stand for too long.
"As we saw in the New Zealand Cup out wide is the place to be," he chides, furious like so many other of the leading horsepeople about the start to Tuesday's race.
While Sundees Son on his A-game would win there are a few with the ability to punish even the smallest of mistakes — Cracker Hill, Heavyweight Hero and possibly even Majestic Lavros.
Cracker Hill is a wonderful 4-year-old but 3200m will be right at the end of his range at this stage and he is reverting to standing starts after a spring diet of mobile starts.
Heavyweight Hero has the manners to step across many of these early and looms as the best place value while Majestic Lavros is an open-class newcomer but already looks as talented as most here.
Dunn also holds the key to tomorrow's other great race, the $180,000 NZ Pacing Free-For-All, with Classie Brigade drawn one.
If he can hold the lead from that position then he not only can win but would almost certainly provide Amazing Dream with the trail and the perfect run.
But if Spankem, a horse once quick enough to lead and win a Miracle Mile, can cross him at the start he becomes the horse to beat.
"I will be doing my best to hold up and lead because if Spankem crosses us he will be able to dictate and we won't beat him," says Dunn.
"But it isn't much fun having Amazing Dream on my back. The same thing happened with Chase Auckland last year when we drew one and he beat us up the lane."
Spankem is so quick it is 50-50 he crosses Classie Brigade, and given he can still win even if he doesn't, he is the best bet in the race.