Russell Memorial lives as much as expectations

The Anto Russell Memorial Cup now sits delight of place on the mantelpiece of Colin McTaggart’s house in Ballyclare following the success of GD’s Blizzard within the harness racing function race on this system at Racetime Raceway (Belfast) final Saturday.

Colin McTaggart

A prime discipline of Irelands finest pacers was assembled to contest this most popular free-for-all with Micheal Goggin’s ex-track report holder John Barley going to put up the new favorite forward of John Burns’s Meadowbranch Roman who drew the pole place slot behind the Cell beginning gate. It’s uncommon {that a} race lives as much as the hype that’s constructed up earlier than it however this occasion delivered in spades.

On the off, Meadowbranch Roman and Verify The Deal locked horns early with each setting a blistering tempo while the three remaining runners Share A Smile, GDs Blizzard and John Barley had been all content material to settle on the tail of the sphere.

With a circuit left to run John Barley made the primary actual transfer of the race however GD’s Blizzard was alert to this and subsequently bought first run on the favorite. Sufficiently softened up after his earlier exertions Meadowbranch Roman dropped tamely away leaving Verify the Deal, John Barley and GDs Blizzard to struggle out the end.

Up the house stretch it was the latter who discovered probably the most and the eight-year-old mare sprinted away from her rivals to triumph in a mile time of two.01, the quickest of the season to date which was fairly an achievement contemplating the sloppy monitor situations.

The winner has been a revelation this season sustaining her unbeaten report across the Racetime circuit. Acquired by McTaggart after choosing up a doubtlessly profession ending harm in 2021, she has been step by step nursed again to full well being and it’s a testomony to his persistence and horsemanship that she’s come again to racing stronger than ever in 2023. She now strikes into pole place as Racetimes winningest horse for the season and in her present wealthy vein of type she stays on the right track for the much-coveted NISA Horse Of The Yr Title.

Colin McTaggart with GD’s Blizzard and pals

Amongst the supporting races on this system Highbrooks Ignite and American Insurgent each claimed victory in 2.05 and a pair of.04 for house owners Tom McDonagh and Mickey Connors respectively for while the ultra-consistent veteran Fortunate Cam gained a well-deserved Grade 1 & 2 handicap in for proprietor Greg Dean who trains on the monitor.

All contests on the day had added cash to the principle purses and all prizemoney was paid out in money to each competitor after racing. Assembly organizers NISA prolonged honest gratitude to all who sponsored on the day, and these embody Dean Russell & Household, Tommy McTaggart and Greg Dean & Household.

A dwell Equine Reiki demonstration passed off throughout racing carried out by Valerie Westfield PHd together with a Q&A session and this was very effectively acquired by the bumper attendance current.

Subsequent Assembly at Racetime is twelfth August and entries with NISA by the same old channels for each grade of pacer.

From Racetime Raceway

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