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Qld Harness News Briefs

Champion trainer John McCarthy has arrived back in the Sunshine State.

The Gr.3 $30,600 AQWA Constructions Be Good Johnny Sprint is the feature on the opening night of the 2018 Queensland summer carnival and McCarthy is hoping to win the race named after his dual Miracle Mile winner.

McCarthy was based at Logan Village for just over a decade (1999 – 2011) after moving from Bathurst and revolutionized the way of training during his stint in Brisbane.

He won many Albion Park Metropolitan trainers premierships while preparing a host of top performers spearheaded by Be Good Johnny, Washakie, Cobbity Classic and Trois Frere among many others.

Another highlight of his career whilst based in Brisbane was the development of his sons Luke, Andy and Todd – all outstanding drivers in their own right.

Now based back in Sydney at Cobbitty, McCarthy has ventured north with a team of six pacers.

Former New Zealand pacer Rakarolla lines up in the 1660m feature this weekend but will require some luck after drawing the inside of the second-line behind a moderate beginner.

The Rocknroll Hanover gelding finished third last week in the Gr.3 $30,000 Tony Turnbull FFA behind noted speedster Majordan in a time of 1:50.6

He has all six horses competing this Saturday night.

McCarthy trained Washakie to win the Be Good Johnny Sprint back in 2011.


Watch Pulp Fiction will be ready to tackle the $20,6 Christmas Cup next week at Albion Park.

And then be set for the Gr.2 $50,0 Queensland Cup the following week, the final night of the summer carnival.

Connections deliberately bypassed this week’s Gr.3 $30,660 AQWA Constructions Be Good Johnny Sprint preferring to concentrate on the longer distance events.

Watch Pulp Fiction scored at TABCORP Park, Menangle two starts ago in 1:52.5 before finishing fifth behind Mister Brazil at his most recent start on November 10.

The Art Major entire is a five times Albion Park winner.


Boom intermediate grade pacer Mr Kalypso tackles the $20,660 AQWA Constructions APHRC Members Cup this Saturday night in what shapes as his toughest test to date.

The hulking Art Major – Kalypso entire will start from the outside of the second-line (gate 13) in the 2138m feature.

Unbeaten in six starts since joining the stables of Kylie Rasmussen and Darren Weeks, the former All Stars trainee has not raced since November 2 when successful at Redcliffe.

But he looked ready following a sharp public trial earlier this week at Albion Park.

Mr Kalypso rated 1:57.2 in the Albion Park 1660m trial on Tuesday afternoon.

Overall, he was 7 of his 13 starts to date.

The Australian Pacing Gold graduate is raced by Cheryl Rasmussen and Trevor Titcomb, both of Blacks A Fake fame.


The career of Amajorjo is at the crossroads.

The veteran performer is a scratching from the Gr.3 $30,660 AQWA Constructions Be Good Johnny Sprint this Saturday night owing to another injury setback.

Plagued by injuries throughout his career, the Art Major rig was found to have some swelling in his nearside front suspensory.

Prepared by Tony Turpin, Amajorjo resumed with an all the way victory in 1:55.2 at Redcliffe on November 3 before finishing an eye-catching 5th at the same venue two weeks later.



Two talented young drivers are on the move.

Hayden Barnes will leave the operation of Chantal Turpin and Pete McMullen this week after years of service and join his father Alistair working a team at Tallegalla.

Barnes has driven 12 winners to date this season while he has driven 257 overall.

Paul Diebert is rejoining Grant Dixon following a stint with Ian Gurney.

Diebert has driven 4 winners to date this season while he has driven 311 overall.

Last weekend, Diebert guided Mach Alert to victory at TABCORP Park, Menangle in the Clintons Toyota Pace in a time of 1:52.9.

Both young men are driving across the weekend.


The racing career of Opononis Bliss could be over.

Fresh from her all the way victory last week at Albion Park in the Changeover @ Burwood Stud Pace, the Mr Feelgood mare pulled up lame following track work this week.

Three starts ago, Opononis Bliss was placed at TABCORP Park, Menangle in 1:52.6.

The talented mare was building a nice record with five wins and eight minor placings from 17 starts.

Back in May, Opononis Bliss scored a resounding victory in the QBRED Triad Consolation for three-year-old fillies.


Talented pacer Escalera is set to resume work next week.

The Bettors Delight is unbeaten in three starts since coming over from New Zealand and joining the stables of Darrel Graham.

Escalera last raced when successful in a personal best time of 1:56.2 at Albion Park back on August 11.

Given a good break, connections look set to have plenty of options going forward with their progressive gelding.


Chris Barsby | RQ Web News | November 30