The Harness Pro – NZ Trotting Cup Day


New Zealand’s first Group 1 harness race of the season is here and to celebrate we are introducing our new regular harness mind, The Harness Pro

With over 15 years of professional harness punting experience, The Harness Pro will be analysing the key races of the season to provide Betfair punters with insight and his suggested bets. 

NZ Trotting Cup Day @ ‘The Met’ – Addington, Tuesday 10 November


Key Statistics

Surface: All Weather

Track Circumference: 1193m

Straight: 250m

Direction: Anti-Clockwise

Current NZ Drivers Premiership

Dexter Dunn – 47 wins/213 starts

Blair Orange – 30 wins/189 starts

John Dunn – 27 wins/153 starts


Current NZ Trainers Premiership

Mark Pudon/Natalie Rasmussen – 24 wins/56 starts

Robert Dunn – 16 wins/146 starts

Tony Herlihy – 15 wins/71 starts

Past Winners

Adore Me,Terror To Love (x3), Monkey King (x2), Changeover, Flashing Red (x2), Just An Excuse (x2) Christian Cullen, Iraklis, Chokin, Il Vicolo (x2)

Average age of last 20 winners: 5.8 years old

Most Wins by a Driver: Ricky May (x7), C C Devine (x6), J Bryce, Todd Mitchell and P T Wolfenden (x4).

Leading Sires in NZ (last 10 years) : Bettors Delight (x4), Christian Cullen (x5), Sundon (x1)

Race Anlaysis & Suggested Bets

RACE 5 – FFA (Mobile) Group 3 – 2600m

Recent winners include:

2014 – Messini

2013 – Adore Me

2012 – Easy On The Eye

2011 – Franco Emirate

2010 – Nearea Franco


Runner & Comment

  1. Northview Gambler: Won last time but is a big query given rise in class. Prefer to risk.
  2. Quick As A Trick: Near the tail of the field in the Kaikoura Cup. Will struggle.
  3. Itz Bettor To Win: Won well at Ashburton, most likely Purdon’s 2nd stringer.
  4. Lewy Risk: SCRATCHED
  5. Bettor Dream: Seventh in the Kaikoura Cup, place chance at best.
  6. Willow: Third to Art Union last time giving it a place chance.
  7. Art Union: Has won 16 of 34 starts. Defeated the nominal favourite ‘Have Faith In Me’ last time at Ashburton. Clear second pick.
  8. Mach’s Gladiator: Finished at the tail of the field at Kaikoura. No.
  9. Bit Of A Legend: 10th of 11 to Smolda last time. Down in class but from a wide gate it’s a place chance for mine.
  10. Have Faith In Me: Did plenty wrong last time when favourite but still managed 2nd to Art Union. With a trouble free run this time it’s the likely winner.


Race Summary

HAVE FAITH IN ME is clearly one of Australasia’s better 4yo’s. He won 4 in a row before spelling. First up this time galloped out and lost the best part of 20 lengths but flew home for 2nd to Art Union beaten just under a length.  They came home in under 54.0 seconds that day which is low flying and barring any mishaps it will be winning.

ART UNION was the beneficiary of Have Faith In Me galloping last time. Art Union is a faultless pacer who has won or run well in numerous feature races including a victory in a Victoria Derby heat, 4th in the NSW Derby and has competed in all the major Derby’s.  He’s the obvious danger.

BIT OF A LEGEND won a Breeders Crown as a youngster and has been racing OK in top open class races of late. WILLOW also was ok last time and can run top 4. ITZ BETTOR TO WIN will have supporters for no other reason than it’s trained by Mark Purdon.


Betting Activity

BACK – WIN – Art Union (7) – $7.20

BACK – WIN – Have Faith In Me (10) – $1.24

Race 6 – NZ Trotting FFA (Mobile) GROUP 1 – 1950m

Recent winners include:

2014 – Stent

2013 – Peak

2012 – I Can Doosit

2011 – Vulcan

2010 – Ima Gold Digger


Runner & Comment

  1. One Over Da Moon: Won 7 in a row. Has drawn well and likely to run top two.
  2. Monbet: Up and coming trotter. Deserved favourite and horse to beat.
  3. Uncas: Will be big odds and I can’t have it.
  4. Waterloo Sunset: Very good 2nd to Stent at Kaikoura after winning here 2 starts ago. Best Roughie.
  5. Habibti: Good youngster who getting back to his best form. Close 3rd to ‘One Over Da Moon’ last start.
  6. Jags Invasion: 3rd to Stent 2 starts ago then a midfield to ‘One Over Da Moon’ last start. No.
  7. Valmagne: Looks outclassed.
  8. Clover Don: Not going well enough, especially from this draw.
  9. Daryl Boko: European import who is the unknown quantity. Watch betting.
  10. Sheemon: Has a dream draw and big chance to run a place at good odds.
  11. Alley Way: Was OK at Kaikoura but would need to jump out of the ground to win here.
  12. Dr Hook: Horribly out of form.
  13. Kincaslough: Got home well last time but I can’t have him.


Race Summary

MONBET is the class horse here and may elect to be more forward than usual. He has a great turn of speed and looks the obvious pick going on his fast finishing 5th last start. Prior to that he won 3 in a row coming off the back of a 2nd in The Jewels. ONE OVER DA MOON has won 7 in a row and beat a very good field last time in the Ashburton Flying Mile which is a vital lead up to this race. Other major victories for this talented trotter include The Holmfield and a Breeders Crown heat in Australia. He can either lead or take a trail. SHEEMON ran 7th in the same race but today has a good trailing draw and is a huge place chance. WATERLOO SUNSET is over the odds and is a winner at this track.  The big query is DARYL BOKO who is a Finnish import – watch for any market moves on it.


Betting Activity

BACK – WIN – One Over Da Moon (1) – Happy to back > $3.90

BACK – WIN – Monbet (2) – Happy to back > $2.00

BACK – WIN – Waterloo Sunset (4) > $17.50

RACE 7 – Sires Stakes Series Final (Mobile) Group 1 – 1950m

Recent winners include:

2014 – Have Faith In Me

2013 – Tiger Tara

2012 – Franco Nelson

2011 – Texican

2010 – Gold Ace


Runner & Comment

  1. Motown: Has gate speed and will get a good run from the plum draw. Each-Way Chance.
  2. Franco Cristiano: Was good from a bad draw last time. With Dexter Dunn on board he looks the value runner.
  3. Bite The Bullet: Still a maiden and will be after this race.
  4. Art Form: Finishing off his races well. Good draw and good driver means it’s a chance. Would still want to be getting well into double figures to be backing it to win however.
  5. Cash N Flow: Looking for a hat-trick today but class rise is against him.
  6. Imola: Hasn’t shown enough talent to be a threat here.
  7. He Can Fly: Maiden after 4 starts in easier company. No.
  8. Kimani: Worked hard last time but was only OK. Midfield at best.
  9. G I Joe: Won it’s maiden in a weak field last time, but horror draw rules him out here.
  10. Chase The Dream: Close up last time when 3rd to the nominal favourite Lazarus. A gun draw makes him a place chance but is under the odds to win.
  11. Lazarus: Won 7 of 9 starts and was very impressive 1st up. Looks the winner from the Purdon yard.
  12. Alta Las Vegas: Beaten favourite at 2 of its last 3 starts in easier class. Not here.
  13. Can’t Refuse: Going Ok in easier class, not today.
  14. Classie Brigade: Went ok in strong company last time, knockout place hope at big odds.
  15. Shandale: Comes South with a very good record. Place chance.


Race Summary

LAZARUS has won 7 from 9 including its stunning win 1st up last time beating most of the rivals here in its heat in the lead up to this race. He sat off a nice pace and showed a great turn of foot in the straight to win unextended. Has drawn perfectly making him close to a good thing. FRANCO CRISTIANO has very good gate speed and looks the early leader. He won his first four starts working through the grades and deserves his chance at this type of race. Gun driver Dexter Dunn is on board and will give it every hope. MOTOWN is drawn to get the gun run behind the leader and is an E/W chance. ART FORM won in very quick time at Waikato (1.53.0). SHANDALE has claims despite an awkward draw. CHASE THE DREAM is drawn to be 3 back the fence and this is the place to be in most NZ races – can run on late to fill the exotics.

Betting Activity

BACK – WIN – Franco Cristiano (2) – $9.80

BACK – WIN – Lazarus (11) – $1.55

RACE 10 – NZ Trotting Cup (Standing Start) Group 1 – 3200m

Recent winners include:

2014 – Adore Me

2013 – Terror To Love

2012 – Terror To Love

2011 – Terror To Love

2010 – Monkey King


Runner & Comment

  1. No Doctor Needed: Not quite up to winning this. Midfield at best.
  2. Franco Nelson: Quality horse but 1st up which means he will lack race fitness over the journey.
  3. Lancewood Lizzie: Ran a creditable 5th to race favourite Smolda in the trial but midfield most likely.
  4. Ohoka Punter: Heads South and is a quality horse having won 17 of 32 starts. Tony Herlihy takes the reins and is coming off a last start 2nd to Smolda. Right in this.
  5. Smolda: One of New Zealand’s best horses of the past few years – Won the Flying Stakes last start which was a high form race and a key lead up to this event. Deserves to be one of the favourites.
  6. Mossdale Conner: Couldn’t win the Kaikoura Cup which means it can’t win here.
  7. Te Kawau: 4th to Arden Rooney in the Kaikoura Cup was good – midfield here at best.
  8. Arden Rooney: Won everything in Australia last season – took a few starts this time in to hit his straps but won the cups at Swan Hill and Kaikoura in its latest two starts. Loves the Standing Start and is as tough as nails.
  9. Messini: The little champ never stops trying. He won well at Methven then at his next start ran 2nd to Arden Rooney at Kaikoura. Is in career best form and looks to have come of age.
  10. Lewy Risk: Needs a miracle and a big one at that.
  11. Brilliant Strike: No.
  12. Tiger Tara: Did it tough in the Flying Stakes at Ashburton after beating Smolda two starts ago. Is one of the top chances and looks over the odds.
  13. Corzin Terror: Good SS Australian horse but is second tier in Australia. Would surprise if he won.
  14. Mighty Flying Mac: An eye catcher at Kaikoura but faces a tough task here.
  15. Sky Major: Multiple big race winner, trained to the minute here. Ordinary draw and winless at the SS and is a chance but is a mile under the odds.
  16. Choise Achiever: Had a good season in Australia a few of years back but is struggling to find that form.
  17. Mach’s Gladiator: Not up to this class.
  18. Quick As A Trick: No.


Race Summary

SMOLDA deserves to be favourite after its brilliant win sitting off the speed last week. He loves the standing start and is the ultimate professional. Trained by the best in Mark Purdon – he will be primed here.

TIGER TARA was huge when 4th to Smolda last time in the Flying Stakes after doing a ton of work to find the lead and kicked on well.

OHOKA PUNTER was 2nd in that race and seems to have developed the toughness required to win New Zealand’s biggest race. ARDEN ROONEY won everything in Australia last season (Terang, Geelong, Mildura and Hunter Cups) and has won two good SS races at its last two starts – the Swan Hill and Kaikoura Cups. He’s as tough as they come it could try and lead all the way.

MESSINI is the people’s horse, honest but may lack the class to win a NZ Cup. SKY MAJOR is under the odds from a horror draw in 15 and is 0 of 4 starts at SS and not really tested over this distance. He’ll be hitting the line hard but his run may come too late.


Betting Activity

BACK – WIN – Ohoka Punter (4) – $4.70

BACK – WIN – Smolda (5) – $3.20

BACK – WIN – Arden Rooney (8) – $8.20

LAY – WIN – Messini (9) – $14.00

BACK – WIN – Tiger Tara (12) – $5.80

LAY – WIN – Sky Major (15) – $10.00

Best of luck!

The Harness Pro.

*This information is general in nature. Betfair does not warrant the accuracy of any promotional information of odds. This article does not constitute betting advice. Customers should review the terms and conditions of promotions to determine their eligibility.