Blistering Speed Helps Cover Girl (NZ) Clinch Harness Million Victory
14 May 2021
Trainer-driver Bob Butt got bragging rights over his good mate and rival, trainer Hayden Cullen, when Cover Girl clinched victory over fellow NZB Standardbred graduate True Fantasy (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight) in the lucrative feature.
“Hayden and I have been good mates for years, I was a groomsman at his wedding,” Butt said.
“It was good to be able to beat him because it doesn’t happen very often.”
“But he was the first person to text and congratulate me after the race.”
Cover Girl’s breakout victory came in just her third start for Butt after she was purchased for $95,000 by Mr M J Anderson at the 2020 Auckland National Yearling Sale from Breckon Farms’ draft.
After notching victory in one of New Zealand’s richest races for two-year-old fillies, Butt will now put Cover Girl aside ahead of what he expects will be a successful three-year-old season.
“Win, lose or draw she was going for a spell after tonight,” Butt said.
“Hopefully she is in for a pretty big three-year-old season.
“She has just kept stepping up right from when I first took her to the trials.”
Butt gave Cover Girl a perfect run in the trail before she showed brilliant speed to run down the hot favourite True Fantasy.
“I have liked her right the way through and she has got quite a bit of speed,” the trainer-driver said.
True Fantasy lost no admirers when running a brave second and going down by just a nose in a thrilling finish.
The two-year-old’s gallant effort added more blacktype to her glittering resume for prolific owner Jean Feiss, who purchased her for $70,000 at the 2020 Christchurch National Yearling Sale from Studholme Bloodstock’s draft
True Fantasy drew the widest possible draw in Barrier 8 and sat parked for almost the entire running of the $150,000 Listed Harness Million Final for driver Natalie Rasmussen.
Cover Girl tracked the leader Dance Till Dawn (NZ) (Art Major), who fought strongly down the home straight for trainer Robert Dunn and driver John Dunn.
Dance Til Dawn was purchased for $40,000 by Robert Dunn from Broadfield Lodge at the 2020 Christchurch National Yearling Sale.
While Cover Girl is heading to the spelling paddock, True Fantasy and Dance Til Dawn are on track to be key players at next month’s Harness Jewels.
|Purchaser||Mr M J Anderson|
|Breeding||Bettor’s Delight x Sossusvlei|
|Sale||Lot 35, 2020 Auckland Yearling Sale, $95,000|
|Bred by||R A Yarndley, Mrs J V Yarndley|