NZ HARNESS NEWS,
September 26, 2017
MONBET-OUT OPTION WITH TAB FOR DOMINION
Woodend co-trainer Greg Hope was pleased to learn the NZ TAB had opened a Monbet-out Dominion Handicap market on Tuesday for the Group One trot race at Addington in November.
TAB bookmaker Richard Wilson advised a Monbet-out option was opened following reports last year’s winner Monbet was rated a 50-50 chance to take his place this year on Monday.
“That’s a good way of doing it. It seems fairer for everyone,” Hope said.
“In a week or two, if Monbet is more likely than 50-50 to start, we can re-open the market with him in it,” Mr Wilson said.
Hope advised Harness Racing New Zealand stipendiary steward Nick Ydgren that a scan of Monday of one of Monbet’s front legs indicated he was showing some aggravation of a minor injury the horse sustained in his three-year-old season.
“There was a little bit of heat in the leg and you first think the worst,” Hope said.
“But the vet said if we go easy on him for a week to 10 days he is pretty confident he will be alright.”
Hope, who co-trains the top trotter with wife Nina, said they wouldn’t risk him if at any stage he wasn’t healthy before the Dominion.
Monbet, now six, had come up “super” in training, according to Hope.
“He’d worked up with Everybody Knows (first-up winner at Oamaru last Sunday) and was pretty good to go (to the races) as well,” he said.
Monbet underwent an operation to have bone chip removed from a knee last December after going unbeaten in three five-year-old starts last October-November.
He won the Group Three Ashburton Trotters Mile in 1:55.2 last October, before winning in NZ record times in both starts during NZ Cup week.
Monbet won the Group One NZ Trotting Free-For-All at Addington on NZ Cup day in 2:21.7 (1:56.9 mile rate) for the mobile 1950m, three days before his Group One Dominion win in a staggering 4:00.7 for the stand start 3200m.
The brilliant squaregaiter has raced only 34 times for 23 wins, earning $770,714 in stakes.
On the TAB Monbet-out option, the front-line of betting is shared between Allstars newcomer Aldebaran Eagle, Bordeaux and Dark Horse, who are all rated $7 chances.
- NZ HARNESS NEWS