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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Miracle Mile Early Preview and Controversy

The owners of Auckland Reactor have accepted an invitation to race in the $500,000(Aus) Miracle Mile being contested at a distance of 1609 metres (one mile) on Sunday, November 29 in Menangle, NSW  While the field for this races has not been finalized, it is beginning to look like a real competive race with Blacks A Fake and Monkey King amongst the starters for this race.

Blacks A Fake seems to be ready to take on Auckland Reactor having gone five for five thus far this season with his most recent victory this past weekend at Albion Park in a mile race of 1:56.1 for the 2138m distance. 

Monkey King beat Auckland Reactor in a controversial race in a 2000m FFA pace at Addington Raceway in a mile rate of 1:54.4, as he benefited by a questionable drive by the eventual last place finisher who apparently drove to 'savage' Auckland Reactor.  The driver, Philip Butcher, is looking at a potential six month ban (if not worse) from driving for his efforts which resulted in his charge finishing 77 1/2 lengths behind the race winner while allowing stablemate Changeover, driven by Butcher's brother to finish third.  .

From news reports, it appears this is the third time in three years that horses trained by Geoff Small's stable have been accused of team driving.  Being racing gets a lot more press coverage down under, I expect the wrath of racing officials to come down hard, especially since this was a high profile incident.

Here is a video of Auckland Reactor when he recently set a New Zealand record for 1950m. 


Pocket Up said...

They do take their racing very seriously down under. The problem I have with the whole situation is that the offending driver and horse were both whisked away before either could comment. The trainer is known for getting into trouble.

This ordeal does have the harness world talking and writing. So, is it good for the sport PG?

Pacingguy said...

Truth be told, unless you are a serious fan of this sport you won't know about this. Those who look at it just as gambling will never know about this.

The good thing is that the sport is big enough in Australia and New Zealand to cause such an uproar. The bad thing is if it happened in the States, it may never have gotten this much press.