New Synthetic Race Surface Delivers For Canberra Racing

Jockeys and trainers are unanimous in their praise for Canberra’s new Acton synthetic racing surface.

The track was raced on for the first time at Friday’s meeting and Canberra Racing Club CEO Peter Stubbs says the feedback was “outstanding”.

It brought a sigh of relief for the club board and management after taking the decision to develop the track ‘in-house’ using wax and fibres imported from Germany and establishing the mixing plant and track laying maintenance machinery on-site.

Racing Returns to Acton Track today

Today racing returns to the Acton track for the first time since 2013. 

The synthetic surface was replaced in October 2016 and racing will continue on the synthetic surface from late May to early September each year.

The Acton Track is a benefit to racing in Winter for a variety of reasons.  It provides an even surface at a better track rating than what can be expected on turf tracks through the Winter months. Racing on the Acton track also allows time for the turf course proper to be renovated in readiness for Spring racing.

Norm Gardner Looking To Boost Impressive Season Record

Canberra trainer Norm Gardner continues to enjoy his best ever season with 16 winners already posted at a strike rate of 21%.

And he’s been the punters pal returning a profit on turnover of 100%.

Gardner lines up three runners at Friday’s meeting on the new Acton surface at Canberra.

Upper House and Caccini debut in the Open 2 and Law Of The Land resumes in the BM65.

Caccini comes off a Canberra trial win and Gardner says she’s a nice filly who will make a better three year old. “She’s still a bit new but I give her a good each-way chance,” he says.

Brad Widdup Expected To Make Training Debut Canberra Friday

Brad Widdup will have his first runner as a trainer in his own right if Junglized lines up in Friday’s Multi-Story Demolition 2YO Handicap at Canberra.

Widdup was recently appointed head-trainer for Damion Flower’s Hawkesbury’s Platinum Park operation for Jadeskye Racing.

The highly-regarded Widdup spent almost 10 years with Darley-Godolphin

Widdup and has some 20 horses currently in work at Platinum Park and is looking to build those numbers.

Fell Swoop Spelled For Two Weeks — Minor Issue

Classy Canberra sprinter Fell Swoop is having two weeks in the spelling paddock after experiencing a slight ligament issue in the Doomben 10,000.

Trainer Matt Dale says Fell Swoop was fine coming off the track and the problem was only detected the next day when he’d cooled down.

“It’s very minor, but it was a no brainer to spell him in Queensland for two weeks before commencing his preparation for the Everest,” Dale said.

“He was four or five wide and Doomben which made it impossible for him, but it was most unlike him not to put in at the finish.  

Premiership Contenders Dominate Canberra Meeting

The Canberra cream rose to the top at yesterday’s meeting in the Capital with leading local trainers and jockeys to the fore.

The ACT trainers premiership is again proving to be a ding dong affair with the Keith Dryden-Scott Collings stable bouncing back to equal first with two winners on the day — Tougherthantherest in Race 2 and Rock Prodigy in Race 6.

The Nick Olive yard also recorded a win with Murrimaid in the opening event and it also went close in another two.

Matt Dale scored with the impressive Autumn in Race 3.

2017 Wagga Town Plate Day — Canberra Gallopers To The Fore

Canberra gallopers have strong representation in Thursday’s bumper Wagga Town Plate feature meeting at Wagga.

Alfden from the Joseph-Jones yard is sure to take beating in the opening event off the second-up placing at Canberra. Nick Olive’s Chuckles comes off an impressive Maiden win and also looks right in it.

The Joseph-Jones-trained Tyres Are Crucial is the Capital’s only representative in the Inglis bonus race for two-year-olds and has impressed winning and placing both his race-runs. Meets some promising city-trained youngsters but a winning run would not surprise.

Damian Browne Booked For Fell Swoop — Doomben 10,000

Crack Queensland hoop Damian Browne has been booked to ride Canberra sprinter Fell Swoop in Saturday week’s Doomben 10,000 (1200m).

Browne is best known for his association with champion Queensland sprinter Buffering and is a renown big race performer.

Fell Swoop will be out to win his first Group 1 when he competes in the time honoured sprint.

Canberra trainer Matt Dale elected to miss Saturday’s Victory Stakes at Eagle Farm and to keep Fell Swoop on the fresh side for the Doomben assignment and confirmed last night that Browne will take the mount.

Tails Up For Single Gaze and Nick Olive

In a Nick Olive training triumph, Single Gaze delivered in Saturday’s Mandate Tails Stakes at Doomben with Olive declaring the best is still to come for the classy Canberra mare.

Ridden by regular hoop Kathy O’Hara, the Group 1 winner sat outside the leader before taking over after the turn and was never headed.

Single Gaze was four-weeks between runs and Olive says she will improve off it.

Twelve months ago Single Gaze fell in the Australian Oaks and has had the odd set-back since.