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Sires Stakes Update

NZ Harness Trainers & Drivers Assn
Published by Pete Cook in News · 20 August 2020
Just when you think things have returned to some form of normality, this pesky virus rears it’s very ugly head again, and throws future plans into uncertainty.

After a lot of discussions and planning, the Sires Stakes Board was pleased to be able to reschedule the races that people had paid up for but missed out on last season, to be staged early this season. Obviously a large spanner has now been jammed into those plans, and there has been some discussion as to whether the original dates and venues for these races remain viable.
However, after investigations and consultation with HRNZ, the Board has decided to refrain from pressing the panic button, and leave things the way they were, at least until we know what the future holds. It was considered that any changes made now would only serve to cause even more confusion and uncertainty for connections, some of whom are already holding their breath!
The following quote from Sires Stakes Board member and Auckland TC Vice president Jamie Mackinnon summed up the general feeling:
“No matter what we do or might consider doing there will be aggrieved parties.
My understanding is that horses can travel to the meetings so that ticks that box, horses that are paid up can participate.
Although not ideal, one can draw on many cases in the past whereby horses have been sent to caretaker trainers and catch drivers engaged. There are many such options available at Auckland.
Racing on September 3rd is fortunately a heat so not as important as a final, but as racing people we qualify to be supreme optimists so everything will be fine once the finals come around at the back end of September.”
Pete Cook

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