Gift Grabs Million Dollars

20 August 2010

Sundons Gift is the first Australian-trained trotter to win $1 million in stakes

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Chris Lang salutes as Sundons Gift becomes the first Australian-trained trotter to win $1 million

Chris Lang salutes as Sundons Gift becomes the first Australian-trained trotter to win $1 million.

Sundons Gift’s status as a harness racing immortal is secure following his win in Friday night’s Tabcorp Australasian Breeders Crown Graduate Trotters Free-For-All at Melton’s Tabcorp Park.

The Chris Lang-trained superstar became the first Australian-prepared trotter to top $1 million in prizemoney when he won the $35,000 Group 2.
First prize of $23,625 took his bankroll to $1,019,593, moving him alongside Kiwi champions Lyell Creek ($2,256,924), Take A Moment ($1,132,694) and One Over Kenny ($1,085,187) as Australasian trotters to have won $1 million.
“It was a great result, a fitting result,” Nagambie-based Lang said. “He’s been a great trotter, he’s won two Inter Dominions, been around the world and been to New Zealand and beaten their best, so it’s a fitting accolade.”
The rising nine-year-old has won 34 of 58 starts for Lang since crossing from is native New Zealand, where he was unplaced in his first six starts.
Along with the past two Inter Dominion finals, Sundons Gift has also won the last three Australian Trotting Grands Prix and in May conquered New Zealand when he won the Rowe Cup in Auckland.
Friday night’s success was also his third win in the Breeders Crown Trotters FFA. He won the first two editions in 2007 and 2008 and was in the spelling paddock last year when Acacia Ridge prevailed.
Sundons Gift’s win came as little surprise to punters following the race-morning scratching of classy five-year-old I Didnt Do It.
He was the horse who denied who Sundons Gift cracking the million at his previous start and when he came out there was no obvious danger to the superstar gelding.
Lang couldn’t have asked for a better run, lobbing in the one out one back from his back-row draw, and while he spotted the leaders six metres at the 250m, he took control of the race when asked.
After claiming the lead at the 150m, the 1 $1.10 favourite pulled away for an effortless 2.8m win over Earl Of Mot with Kyvalley Mac a further half-neck back in third. The mile rate was 2:00, which included closing sections of 29.4 and 29 seconds.
“To be quite honest, I couldn’t believe the run I got…I couldn’t have scripted it any better,” Lang said. “Just having to do what he did, it was a nice way to get the million bucks.”
Sundons Gift will now have a let up before being set for a fourth straight win in December’s Australian Trotting Grand Prix.
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