Harness Racing Victoria’s Gordon Rothacker Medal winner for 2012, Elmore’s Neville Welsh will look to close what has been a memorable year with a victory in tonight’s World’s Best Hoof Oil Trot at Bendigo’s Lord’s Raceway.
Welsh will harness up Rainbow Jay Jay in the trot, with his son Clinton taking the reins at the Junortoun track.
Neville who drives sparingly in races these days, drove Rainbow Jay Jay into second place at Cobram on Thursday and was in the sulky when the son of Yankee Paco was a winner at Cobram in November.
That month the trainer, now in his seventies, joined some of the greats in harness racing by winning the Gordon Rothacker Medal, the code’s most prestigious individual award.
Rainbow Jay Jay is no superstar, but is developing into a more than handy racehorse.
He has won five of 28 starts, with three of those victories achieved this season.
In the eight-horse 2150m mobile start race at Bendigo, Rainbow Jay Jay will be the only starter on the second line.
There are three trotting races on the nine-race program, with the feature being the $10,000 Bendigo Bank Vicbred Platinum Country Series G Final over 2150 metres.
Heats of the pacers final were run at Wedderburn and Geelong, and the bulk of the field looks evenly matched.
Royal Witness, trained at Mernda by Ian Dornauf is likely to start the race favourite after his second placing at Geelong.
Royal Witness, a winner a Bendigo last month, will be driven by Ian’s son Matthew.
Bendigo Harness Racing Club general manager David Aldred said there would be a big fortnight of racing and events at Lord’s Raceway.
On Monday, January 7, the club will race on Monday afternoon, with heats of the historic Central Victorian Pacing and Trotting Championships.
The races will be followed by the club’s first family movie night, with the club operating an Open-Air Cinema at the track.
Bendigo’s biggest night of the harness racing season is on Saturday, January 12 when the Group 2 Petstock Bendigo Pacing Cup and the Group 2 Aldebaran Park Maori Mile Trot will be run at Lord’s Raceway in McIvor Road, Junortoun.
A holiday for two to Hong Kong will be won by a lucky racegoer on Bendigo Pacing Cup night.