Trot Tactics: Fading family lines a mystery
IF WE study the history of harness breeding in any depth, we may be mystified by the sudden disappearance of successful sire lines from the race tracks.
Why do families become unpopular?
The following transcript relates to the induction of Globe Derby into the Victorian trotting Hall Of Fame earlier this month:
"The fourth legend to join Gordon Rothacker, Maori's Idol and George Gath was Globe Derby, the greatest Standardbred stallion ever born in the Southern Hemisphere, and the stallion chosen in 1976 to be associated with the Australian National Sire Awards. Globe Derby was a champion on the track but even better in the stud barn. He sired any number of great sons and daughters such as Evicus (1936 ID), Springfield Globe (1939 ID), Logan Derby (1940 ID), Walla Walla (Australia's greatest pacer of his era), Auburn Lad (NZ mile record holder), Van Derby (NZ mile race record) and New Derby. The Globe Derby sireline dominated Australasian racing for more than fifty years and provided the first 2:00 mile in NZ (Lawn Derby), the first 2:00 mile in Australia (Avian Derby), the first sub 2:00 mile in Australia (Ribands) and the fastest ever mile at the Melbourne Showgrounds (Reichman). An indicator of its influence in Victoria is that 13 of the first 18 Hunter Cup winners and two of the first three Melbourne Inter Dominion winners were by Globe Derby line stallions."
The above list of achievements, one might think, would ensure the preservation and growth of the line for all time, as it seemed to have the magic quality of improving its speed from one generation to the next, without loss of staying power.
Not so, and the Globe Derby blood was gone by the late 60's in NSW, and New Zealand's link through Lord Module barely 25 years later.
With the breeding season now in full swing one can only ponder what might have been had we stuck with a majority of home bred stallions, rather than swallowing the "American dream" and its fanfare of "world records" over the one mile distance.
AN EARLY warning for Marburg's next race day Saturday, November 14.
The main event on the day will be the Graham Harriott Memorial Trot, a discretionary handicap for trotters assessed at TR0 or better, run over 2200m with a maximum back mark of 40m.
Prize money of $2,000, an inscribed rug and trophy plus the soft conditions for the faster assessed horses, ensures a fast run spectacle for the Harriott.
This year there will be a second trot on the program, again with a TR0 front.
Graham Harriott is well remembered as a popular president of the Marburg Pacing Association and a fanatical supporter of the traditional trotter in Queensland.
Graham's family and friends will be well represented on the day, so come along and enjoy it with them.
There will be all the Marburg features and amenities, a multi meat tray raffle, a "funny money" bookmaker up alongside one of our regular satchel swingers, a pick-the-last-four-winners competition worth $100 courtesy of Fast Work Horse Supplies; combined with tasty country burgers, fish and chips and more with hot and cold drinks, plus the best bar prices you'll get at a sporting event.
See next Saturday's QT for times and further details.
A WEEK or so back, new ground was broken in Australian harness racing when Irish pacer, Meadowbranch De Jay, stepped off a cargo flight from the northern hemisphere at Perth airport.
The 7yo gelding, accompanied by strapper Michael O'Mahoney, was bound for the stables of leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond.
From there, if he adapts to the massive shift in weather and surroundings (going from the peaty soils, cool breezes and soft turf of Ireland to the sand and heat of WA ) he will be a massive draw card for the upcoming Inter-dominion series.
Greg Bond is of the opinion that Meadowbranch De Jay is a quality horse and has only to handle the Gloucester Park style of racing to justify his presence.
Michael O'Mahoney said that the venture had created great excitement back in the emerald Isle. In his words, "It is just a huge deal".
Selections for Albion Park tonight: R 1 - Box trifecta 1-7-9: Zeda Guy (P. McMullen) - I'm Born To Rule (P. Diebert) - Remember Them (N. Dawson).
R 2: Box trifecta 1-8-10: Glengowan (R. Gorman) - Cold Ideal (C. Cini) - Wandary Splash (G. Whitaker).
R 3: Quinella 1-8: Broadway Playboy (B. Graham) and Ohoka Colorado (S. Graham).
R 4: E/w - 1 Cankickatarget (G. Dixon).
R 5: E/w - 5 Deano Robyn (G. Dixon).
R 6: E/w - 8 Supaliner (D. Graham).
R 7: Quinella 1-2: Thinking Of You (I. Ross) and Western Blaze (B. Barnes).
R 8: Quinella 1-8: Jewel Lehigh (M. Neilson) and Sheza shadow (D. Weeks).
R 9: E/w - 5 Reddy Fire (G. Whitaker).
R 10: Box trifecta 1-2-6: Tyron Lochie (R. Gorman) - Ivanov (P. Greig) - Our Overannova (G. Dixon).
AS IN politics, a week in harness racing can make a big difference. The leader board tells us that the names have not changed, but the flood has turned to trickle. Pete McMullen is still top driver but down nine on last week's 13 for a creditable four wins while spouse and stable trainer Chantal led in three winners.
Gold Coast at Albion Park, October 23: Franco Nepia (Barty Cockburn), Feel The Need (Nathan Dawson for Travis Mackay), Lady White Water (Gary Whitaker for Bill Crosby)..
Albion Park, October 24: Lilbitofchickenfried (Barty Cockburn for Paul McGregor), Shareapassion (Pete for Chantal McMullen), Blue Eyed Suzie (Pete for Chantal McMullen), Change Of Mind (Shane Graham for Shane Sanderson).
Albion Park, October 27: Tally Ho Bromac (Isobel Ross for Barty Cockburn), Katesaroyal (Barty Cockburn for Mick Grant).
Redcliffe, October 28: Lord Jones (Darrell Graham), My Crazy Ex (Pete for Chantal McMullen), Lifeontopofdeworld (Gary Whitaker for Ron Sallis), Teniamo (Adam Richardson for Tess Neaves), Navarda Ace (Pete for John McMullen).
Gold Coast at Redcliffe, October 29: Matt Belford (Adam Richardson for Murray Thomas), Montana Baron (Amy Rees for Billy Borg), Paris To Berlin (Matt Elkins for Greg Elkins).