Darrel Graham will take over the preparation of former Victorian trotter Lucky Twenty Three for the Darrell Alexander Memorial Trotting Series at the Gold Coast.
The Darrell Alexander Memorial Trotting Series at the Gold Coast is shaping as the best since its inception back in 2006.
Last week, Racing Queensland in conjunction with Harness Racing Victoria announced sweeping changes to the series which will begin this Friday night at Parklands.
The series received an upgrade to Group 2 status, a prizemoney injection which now stands at $30,000 while the winner is exempt from ballot for the Great Southern Star series in Melbourne on March 23 next year.
And the first of the southern trained trotter is set to arrive in Queensland tomorrow (Wednesday).
Lucky Twenty Three, a six times winner has been brought north to contest the series for owners Dean Shannon and Jeff Marr.
The beautifully bred gelding was bought from the 2009 Australian Pacing Gold sales in Melbourne for $55,000 before entering the stables of leading Queensland trainer Darrel Graham.
As a pacer, he failed, but as a trotter he continues to make inroads.
Lucky Twenty Three was sent back to Melbourne and entered the stables of master horseman Graeme Lang for his racing career.
“He’s been a good story this horse, Dean paid good money for him as a yearling and his pedigree page is fantastic as he descends from a top Queensland family and ranks as a half-brother to smart mare Left In Paris ($151,000 – 1;56.7) but he couldn’t pace but he can trot and he can trot pretty good.” Darrel Graham said.
Under the tutelage of Lang, Lucky Twenty Three has won 6 races while managing 10 minor placing’s during his 37 start career to date.
“With this new concept in Victoria, the boys decided to bring him home and chase a free pass through this series up here.
The plan is to win this series and then send him back down to Graeme but we have a back-up plan in place just in case things don’t go our way, he will stay here and we’ll chase a MO with him before he ultimately returns to Graeme.
This series is going to be strong, no pushover but he keeps improving this guy and his form is quite solid, he’s a proven Melton winner plus he’s contested the past two Australasian Breeders Crown Series Finals but unfortunately made mistakes.”
The Darrel Alexander Memorial series begins Friday night with heats over 2609m with the second round of heats to be staged the following week over the shorter 2100m.
The Seelite Windows & Doors DJA Memorial Final will be held on October 13, the same night as the Gr.2 $75,000 Kevin & Kay Seymour Gold Coast Cup.