27 May 2017 | Michael Howard
Anthony Butt wins a thrilling Golden Reign Free For All with My Field Marshall.
An ultra-impressive My Field Marshall mowed down some of Victoria’s best front runners to land another blow for those from the south-east of the Tasman.
Just when the locals thought it was safe to return to the Tabcorp Park Melton straight after The Orange Agent's earth-scorching three weeks concluded, Kiwi trainer Tim Butt’s My Field Marshall nosed out Maximan and Major Crocker to claim tonight’s TAB.com.au Golden Reign Free For All.
“He’s a beautiful horse, very adaptable, so he’s lovely to drive, hopefully he’s got a big couple of years ahead,” driver Anthony Butt said after My Field Marshall won for a second time in as many weeks, coming on the back of his TAB 4YO & 5YO Championship win.
Butt showed intent from the outset tonight, working forward from gate six and advancing to the breeze to sit outside leader Stormfortheboys amid a 43.4-second lead time.
Cover came when Guaranteed and then Major Crocker claimed the chair, with the frontrunners finding little time to reclaim their breath amid a sequence of sub-30 quarters.
Come the final turn Kate Gath guided Maximan from the box seat and set foot after Major Crocker who had grabbed a length, with My Field Marshall taking the last crack at them.
Butt timed it a treat, with My Field Marshall nosing ahead of Maximan on the line, while Major Crocker and fast finishing Milly Perez were just 1.4m back in third and fourth.
“It was a really good run tonight, probably a step up on the field from last week but he felt really good and he was sharp,” Butt said.
“He came out (of the gates) good tonight. He’s not blazing, but he can get out pretty good when you want him to.
“When I came out on the corner he really sprinted, so he’s really going great. Last week he sort of outstayed them but (tonight) he really showed his speed.”
It’s timely form, with My Field Marshall’s campaign geared towards the June 25 $106,000 Group 1 at Tabcorp Park Menangle.
“He’s going to go to the Len Smith Mile, it’s just a matter of whether he stays here for a race in two weeks or the Golden Mile at Menangle in two weeks,” Butt said.
“That will be up to Tim, but the way he’s going he’s fitted in really good down here, he seems to like the track so I will be pushing for him to stay here for the two weeks and then go to the Len Smith Mile later. Tim will decide that.”
The Fuel Fast Pace, an M1 to M2, also went the way of a visitor, with South Australian trainer Greg Norman taking the honours when his six-year-old grey Adam Cartwright produced a withering burst.
Driver Greg Sugars said the trainer deserved all credit.
“Anyone who knows anything about South Australian harness racing knows the history of the Norman family, one thing they are for sure is great horseman and Greg is no exception,” Sugars said. “He does a very good job.
“(Adam Cartwright) just needed an ounce of luck. It was a reasonable lead time and then the breaks came my way when it was time to get off and the horse did the rest.”
The night also featured the Own The Moment Vicbred Platinum Metropolitan Pace heats, with Jason Lee grabbing a break at the turn to guide Keayang Ebonyrose to victory ahead of favourite Rocknroll Magic in the second heat and trainer-driver Rodney Petroff winning the first heat with Brocks Territory. They will return for the $30,000 final on June 3.
Of the trotters, Conon Bridge won a competitive $14,000 Aldebaran Park Monte Championship by a length from Vics Cheval and debutant K D Muscles, and Fabrication was impressive again in winning the Haras Des Trotteurs Trot, to the delight of driver David Murphy.
“As a two, three, four-year-old he was probably a rung below the better ones but I always felt like he would get up to them and he’s making the transition into open age racing really well,” Murphy said.