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Veteran Maid marching to unlikely Trot Rods lead

20 May 2024

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Races

1
1

Redcliffe | Redcliffe Peninsula Harness Racing & Sporting Club | 4:53 PM

2024 TROT RODS - HEAT 7 - TIME TO BEAT 64.77

1
ARTFUL MAID
D: Dayl March
2
MISSED CONSEQUENCES
D: Grant Dixon
3
IM BOO NZ
D: Dannielle Veivers

By Jordan Gerrans

Veteran mare Artful Maid has faced retirement a couple of times in recent years, but at 10 years of age she is the leader in the clubhouse as Trot Rods reaches the business end of the series for 2024.

The Dayl March-prepared and driven mare set the speediest time around the Redcliffe ‘Triangle’ this year on Wednesday of last week at 64.59 seconds.

The Warwick mare did so in the seventh heat of the series with the ninth and tenth set to be contested at Redcliffe on Wednesday evening.

The series is fast approaching its finale night on Wednesday May 29, with 10 Trot Rods races to be showcased on a dedicated SKY 2 broadcast. 

The 53-year-old March is unsure if Artful Maid’s time will stand up to become the 2024 champion of the popular series but he is glad to hold the interim title for a period of time at least. 

The experienced pacer began from the inside draw and held the lead throughout over the sharp 947 metre trip.

“I didn’t really have it in the back of my mind to break the time – I was really just trying to win the race, really,” the reinsman said.

“There was a bit of pressure outside of us meant that we kept rolling.

Veteran mare Artful Maid and Dayl March at Redcliffe.

“It is good to be in front at this stage but I will not be holding my breath about holding the fastest time throughout the series.

“I think the time will eventually get beaten and on the last night, there is a whisper around a few bigger stables will bring a bit better quality horse.”

The Trot Rods triumph last Wednesday became the 21’st of the bay’s career and was the first time she had started in the series over the years since its inception.

She has now won two of her last six trips to the races.

“She is 10 years old now and we have contemplated retiring her a few times,” the Warwick horseman said.

“When there was a few little issues with her that was what we were thinking but she got over them quickly and we pressed on with her.

“We are really happy with the mare – she has been a really good mare to me and her owner Greg Smith.

"We are pleased she has been here.”

Based on the Southern Downs of the Sunshine State, March has 10 standardbreds in work.

He has dabbled in preparing horses in both codes of racing in recent times but has stepped back from the gallopers over the last couple of years.

March tasted success in the thoroughbred’s when Secondofmay got the money at Warwick in early 2020.

Precocious Kate from the March yard.

He has focussed his attention more so on pacers and trotters since late 2022.

The March team celebrated a winner double last Wednesday at Redcliffe as stable mate Bonnies Cam got the money with Alanah Richardson in the bike.

Bonnies Cam will be chasing back-to-back triumphs when the gelding heads to Albion Park on Tuesday.

He will be joined at headquarters by Precocious Kate in the QBRED Breeders Classic Consolation for the three-year-old girls.

Precocious Kate has put together an astonishing record so far in 2024 – running in the money on 10 occasions – without yet winning a race in 13 attempts.

The emerging filly certainly has talent and March is keen to see her finally put it all together on race day and grab the second victory of her career.

Races

4
4

Redcliffe | Redcliffe Peninsula Harness Racing & Sporting Club | 6:14 PM

MAZDA ASPLEY PACE

1
BONNIES CAM
D: Alanah Richardson
2
THERESACHANCE
D: Chloe Butler
3
THE RAINBOW BEACH
D: Mitch Turnbull

Doing the driving himself on Tuesday, March begins from seven on the front row in the $13,935 Consolation after the major prize was held on Saturday evening under metropolitan lights.

“Precocious Kate is going really well but it is just the barrier draw,” March said.

“She has been going really good that little filly and has been running so many placings.

“We just need her to win one – which would be really handy – as she is looking at her second QBRED bonus, that would be really good to get.

“It would be nice to win another race with her. She has drawn the seven which does not help.

“Bonnies Cam is going really good but it is a class rise, he will need to be at his best to figure in the finish.”

Click here for more information on Trot Rods.

BONNIES CAM Next Racing
PRECOCIOUS KATE
ARTFUL MAID Next Racing
WONDERWOMAN JUJON Next Racing