Special Filly Set to Shine Again in Harness Million Final

12 May 2021

True Fantasy (NZ) as a yearling.

True Fantasy (Bettor’s Delight) (NZ) will be out to confirm her star status in the $150,000 Listed NZB Standardbred Harness Million Two-Year-Old Fillies Final (1700m) at Alexandra Park on Thursday night. 

The Hayden Cullen trained pacer is the horse to beat in the lucrative feature, after displaying the rarest of talent in back-to-back Group One victories in her last two starts.

True Fantasy has looked like a class act from the moment she stepped on to the racetrack after she was purchased by Jean Feiss at NZB Standardbred’s 2020 National Yearling Sale in Christchurch. Feiss secured the stellar performer for $70,000 from Studholme Bloodstock’s draft.

After running a solid second placing on debut, the three-year-old won a heat of the Magness Sires Stakes Series in only her second start.

True Fantasy then went on to produce a staggering win in very tough conditions when launching a flying finish from last at the 400 metre mark in the $90,000 Group One Woodlands Stud Caduceus Club Fillies Classic (2200m) at Alexandra Park on 23 April.

A week later on the same track, the filly produced another scintillating victory, soaring down the outer to win the $120,000 Group One Magness Benrow New Zealand Sires Stakes Championship (1700m).

Those two brilliant performances leave little doubt about True Fantasy and driver Natalie Rasmussen will be the combination to beat in the highly anticipated Harness Million Series final, despite them drawing on the outside of the front line in Barrier 8.

Barry Purdon and Scott Phelan have combined with Queensland owner Dean Shannon (Montana Park) to start two runners in Thursday night’s feature.

Montana Glory (NZ) was secured for $24,000 by Dean Shannon.

Montana Glory (NZ) (Always B Miki) has recently produced excellent performances, claiming second and third placings when chasing home True Fantasy in both of her Group One victories. 

The two-year-old showed grit and incredible stamina after being forced to race wide in the Magness Benrow New Zealand Sires Stakes Championship, resulting in her third placing.

Montana Glory was purchased as a weanling by Dean Shannon’s Montana Park for $24,000 out of Alabar’s draft at NZB Standardbred’s 2019 All Age Sale at Karaka.

Shannon also purchased another serious Harness Million contender at the same sale in Miki Montana (NZ) (Always B Miki), who he secured for $22,000 from Alabar’s draft.

Montana Glory starts in Barrier 6 for driver Scott Phelan, with Miki Montana outside her stablemate in Barrier 7 for Zachary Butcher.

Dance Till Dawn (Art Major) (NZ) is set to play a major part in Thursday night’s Harness Million final for trainer Robert Dunn and driver John Dunn after securing Barrier 1.

The filly has shown potential after claiming third and second placings in both Group One and Group Two races.  

Dance Til Dawn was purchased for $40,000 by Robert Dunn from Broadfield Lodge at the 2020 National Yearling Sale in Christchurch.

Dunn also starts Chevrons Bypass (NZ) (Captaintreacherous), who starts from Barrier 4 for driver Tony Herlihy.

The two-year-old was purchased as a weanling from Michelle Carson’s draft at the 2019 All Age Sale at Karaka and later offered at the National Standardbred Yearling Sale in Christchurch. There she was purchased by Small Car World  for $32,500 from Lisa Daly’s draft.

NZB Standardbred National Yearling Sale purchases Cover Girl (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight), The Iron Lady (Somebeachsomewhere) (NZ) and I'llavabubbles (Always B Miki) (NZ) will also contest the Harness Million feature on Thursday evening.

The $150,000 Listed NZB Standardbred Harness Million Two-Year-Old Fillies Final will be run as Race 5 at 7:23PM (NZT) at Alexandra Park on Thursday 13 May. 

2021 Harness Million Fillies Final Field

Barrier Horse Driver Trainer Sale Purchaser 
1 Dance Till Dawn (NZ) John Dunn Robert Dunn 2020 Christchurch Yearling Sale, $40,000 Diamond Racing
2 Cover Girl (NZ) Bob Butt Bob Butt 2020 Auckland Yearling Sale, $95,000 Mr M J Anderson
3 The Iron Lady (NZ) Logan Hollis Logan Hollis & Shane Robertson 2020 Auckland Yearling Sale, $10,000 Breckon Farms
4 Chevrons Bypass (NZ) Tony Herlihy Robert Dunn 2019 Auckland All Age Sale, $22,000,
2020 Christchurch Yearling Sale, $32,500
Kentuckiana Lodge,
Small Car World
5 I'llavabubbles (NZ) Dylan Ferguson Graeme Rogerson 2020 Auckland Yearling Sale, $16,000 Rogerson Bloodstock
6 Montana Glory (NZ) Scott Phelan Barry Purdon & Scott Phelan 2019 All Age Sale, $24,000 Montana Park
7 Miki Montana (NZ) Zachary Butcher Barry Purdon & Scott Phelan 2019 All Age Sale, $22,000 Montana Park
8 True Fantasy (NZ) Natalie Rasmussen Hayden Cullen 2020 Christchurch Yearling Sale, $70,000 Mrs J L Feiss