Grand Circuit Trotting Champion; Sundons Gift has claimed the title for the second successive season for trainer/driver Chris Lang. Photo by Gary Wild.
Millionaire Australian trotter Sundons Gift has once again claimed the honour of being crowned the Barastoc Grand Circuit Trotting Champion for the second straight season.
The Chris Lang trained and driven star won three Grand Circuit events during the season whilst being a runner-up behind his stablemate Let Me Thru in the V L Dullard Cup.
The Sundon gelding won the NSW Trotters Mile, Bill Collins Trotters Mile plus the Australian Trotting Grand Prix throughout the season.
Sundons Gift finished the season with 17 points, I Can Doosit tallied 14 points whilst Let Me Thru and Stylish Monarch each ended the season with 12 points each.
The $200,000 Canam Rowe Cup was the final leg of the Barastoc Grand Circuit season and was taken out by outstanding talent I Can Doosit for co-trainers Mark Purdon and Grant Payne.
Purdon drove a masterful race to guide the son of Muscles Yankee to a popular victory downing Dr Hook by a 1 ½ lengths whilst Raydon held third in a milerate of 2.04.8 for the 3200m standing start feature.
“He's a special horse who is raced by special people,” a sentimental Purdon stated after the event.
“The Inter Dominion victory was great but his performance tonight was terrific, he's a done a wonderful job.”
Here's a quick review of the Barastoc Trotting Grand Circuit 2010/11 season;
As always, the season officially gets under-way in New Zealand with the running of the $80,000 Seelite Windows and Doors NZ Trotting FFA at Addington, Christchurch.
The Michelle Wallis trained and Todd Mitchell driven Ima Gold Digger sprung a big upset by charging to the line to beat Idid It Myway and Stylish Monarch.
Ima Gold Digger scored officially by 4 ½ lengths and recorded a time of 1.59.6 for the 2600m event.
The $200,000 Hellers Dominion was the next leg of the Grand Circuit and the venue was once again Addington, and the richly talented Stylish Monarch capitalised on a ground saving trip from ace reinsman Ricky May to beat I Can Doosit and The Fat Controller.
The Murray Tapper trained gelding scored by a neck whilst recording a time of 2.02.1 for the 3200m marathon.
The Barastoc Grand Circuit action returned to Australia and the Sunnyfield NSW Trotters Mile was the feature at TABCORP Park, Menangle.
The event was considered a two horse match race between Victorian trained stars Sundons Gift and Down Under Muscles with the glamour trotters dominating all pre-race discussions.
The Chris Lang trained and driven Sundons Gift prevailed from Down Under Muscles whilst Kyvalley Mac filled third position in a milerate of 1.54.3.
Leg four of the Grand Circuit ventured to Cranbourne for the running of the Aldebaran Park Bill Collins Trotters Mile and the result was exactly the same as the previous leg from Sydney.
Sundons Gift once again proved too strong for Down Under Muscles and Kyvalley Mac in a time of 1.59.2 for the 1609m event.
The $125,000 SEW Eurodrive Australian Trotting Grand Prix was staged at TABCORP Park, Melton and Sundons Gift made it three straight feature race victories lasting by a half head defeating La Mosca and Kyvalley Mac.
Sundons Gift recorded a milerate of 1.59.1 for the 2240m event.
Leg six of the Grand Circuit headed back across the ditch for the $80,000 Seelite Windows and Doors National Mobile Trot at Alexandra Park, Auckland.
The highly fancied Sovereignty proved superior defeating Ima Gold Digger and Ray in a milerate of 2.02.2 for the 2700m event.
Sovereignty was handled by ace reinsman Maurice McKendry for trainer Sean McCaffrey.
The trotting action returned to Victoria and Let Me Thru signalled his arrival on the big stage.
The $150,000 SEW Eurodrive Australasian Trotting Championship at TABCORP Park, Melton proved to be the first of two majors for Let Me Thru when he comfortably beat Down Under Muscles and La Mosca in a time of 2.06.1 for the 2760m standing start feature.
Let Me Thru is trained by Chris Lang and is driven by Chris Jnr. for owner Richard Matthews.
The next leg of the Grand Circuit was once again staged at TABCORP Park, Melton with the $50,000 Callea Pearce Lawyers V L Dullard Cup and again the Lang trained Sundons Gift and Let Me Thru dominated the pre-race discussions.
The master was pitted against the apprentice.
And the outstanding trotters didn't disappoint with Let Me Thru scoring by a half head margin from Sundons Gift whilst Danny Cash was third.
The time was 2.00.3 for the 2760m event.
The $250,000 Dream With Me Stables Inter Dominion Trotting Grand Final was staged at Alexandra Park, Auckland in April after being transferred from Addington because of the earthquakes that rocked the city in February.
Australian star Let Me Thru was gunned down by I Can Doosit in the final stages with Stylish Monarch an unlucky third.
I Can Doosit is trained in partnership by Mark Purdon and Grant Payne and Purdon took the winning drive on the Muscles Yankee gelding.
Ken and Karen Breckon race I Can Doosit.
The $80,000 Gary Thompson/Fred Shaw NZ Trotting Championship was staged at Addington, Christchurch and Stylish Monarch exacted revenge on I Can Doosit.
Stylish Monarch lasted by a half head margin defeating I Can Doosit whilst European trotter Annicka was third.
The milerate was 2.01.5 for the 2600m event.
Murray Tapper and Ricky May combined yet again for the victory.
Congratulations to all who competed during another highly successful Barastoc Grand Circuit Trotting season.