Woods wins BOTRA series while Yole brings up century

11 / 07 / 2017 Article by: Duncan Dornauf
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Twenty-one year old Fingal reinsman Brady Woods experienced one of his biggest thrills in his harness racing career when he took out the 2017 Botra Claiming Novice Drivers Series in Launceston on Sunday evening.

Woods had a one-point lead going into the final two heats. He drove the Paul Belcher trained Striker Jim into fourth placing in heat five and $90 chance Last Guy Standing into fourth position in the final heat which was enough to secure woods the series.

Brady is the son of successful trainer Scott Woods and like many in the industry, Brady followed the family footsteps into the industry. “I followed my dad and pop (Robert) into the sport, they have both had success as trainers, breeders and owners and pop was also a successful driver back in his day,” Woods said.

“I had a small stint at training about a year ago and it is something I will do again later down the track,” the young driver explained.

Brady’s cousin Alister, who is the assistant manager at Malahide where Brady also works finished fourth in the series nine points behind Brady.

Woods drove two winners in the six-race series.

The final two heats were taken out by Jack Laugher. He drove Karalta Kruise to victory in heat five. The Kent Rattray-trained pacer led all the way to win by 18-metres. Laugher then partnered up with Kent’s nephew Todd to win heat six aboard God Sake. It was the Kenneth J gelding’s fourth win of the season. Laugher went on to record his first driving treble with Christian Jaz later in the night.

Yole’s Century

There were century’s all round the state on Sunday, leading thoroughbred trainer Scott Brunton prepared his 100th winner for the season at the Hobart gallops, while leading harness racing trainer Ben Yole brought up his second century in as many seasons.

It was the Shadow Play mare Whenthegroundshook driven by Ben’s younger brother Mark bringing up the milestone win. Mark settled the $11 chance three back along the marker pegs in the 1680 metre event before easing into the clear at the top of the home straight to win by four metres.

Ben made it 101 wins for the season when he prepared Jivin Cullen to victory later in the night.

Ben is now chasing the state record of 123 wins which is held by Wayne Rattray in the 1988/89 season which went for 13-months when the start of the season shifted from August 1 to September 1.

Photos courtesy of Greg Mansfield.

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