Tartan Trilogy out to keep good runs on grass going

In-form veteran Tartan Trilogy will attempt to improve his already excellent grass track record at Wingatui today.

The Chelsea Faithful-trained pacer has never missed a first three placing on turf, and he will attempt to keep that record intact in race 6.

The one thing that may stand between Tartan Trilogy and continuing his good grass track run is the weather.

If forecast rain hits the Wingatui track, it could make it tough going for the previously injury-
plagued veteran.

"I'm hoping it doesn't rain too much," said Faithful.

"... the track [could get] really worked up, [it] being a dual-code day.

"If the track gets too wet it will be hard on his old legs, especially when he has done a suspensory ligament before."

A hard and fast track would be much more to Tartan Trilogy's liking.

"He likes the grass, it seems to take some of the speed out of the other horses.

"He feels his feet a wee bit, so the grass is quite good for his joints."

Tartan Trilogy helped Faithful notch a career highlight when he won at Forbury Park last month, beating his stablemate Toby O'Gara, who was third.

The pacer and driver Nathan Williamson weaved through heavy traffic and produced a big finish for third in his next start at Wyndham, this month.

"The more racing he gets the better he should get - he is quite a big, gross sort of a horse," Faithful said.

Williamson will drive Tartan Trilogy today and will also be behind Toby O'Gara in race 3.

Toby O'Gara does not have the same impressive record on grass his stablemate has.

The 5yr-old has failed in two starts on turf, and today's event could decide whether he has any liking for the surface.

"It is a bit of a question mark," said Faithful.

"He throws his head on the grit quite badly, so that is one thing that won't worry him."

Toby O'Gara produced a booming finish from off the pace in his last start at Wyndham.

That effort came after the pacer failed in his prior start at Ascot Park.

Those runs typify the horse's hit-or-miss style of racing.

"He surprised me a bit last time, he is a bit in-and-out.

"He is better than a rating 40 horse, but he is a hard horse to get a line on.

"He is quite a laid-back character - the way he went last Saturday he would put that field away, but you just never know which Toby is going to turn up."

Southland trainers Kirstin Barclay and Paul Ellis have set themselves a very hard act to follow at today's meeting.

They produced U May Cullect for a highly impressive win on Saturday at Wyndham.

The 5yr-old produced a booming finish from off the pace to score in 1.51.1, clearly the fastest time on the Wairio Trotting Club's Mile Day at Winton on Saturday.

U May Cullect was just 0.2sec outside the all-comers' record of 1.51.9, set by Delightful Memphis in 2017.

Barclay and Ellis have three starters at today's meeting that will be hard-pressed to win as impressively.

They start Moniburns in race 5, Miss Fandango in race 6, and Double Rainbow in race 7.


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