Williamson Heads North

Williamson Heads North

Bruce Stewart

17th October 2021

Branxholme trainer Nathan Williamson has headed north on the biggest trip of his short training career.

Williamson left Southland early this morning with junior driver Ollie Kite and six horses on the float, and he has a variety of targets over the next four weeks.

The greatest test will be next month’s $600,000 Group One New Zealand Trotting Cup which has Southland Horse of the Year Pembrook Playboy in the mix for Williamson.

After leading in the Canterbury Classic Pembrook Playboy was run down late, beaten a neck by one of the Cup favourites South Coast Arden.

“I was thrilled with his run. He’s come through the race and is fit and well. The Flying Stakes at Ashburton will be next but I’m going to give him a quiet trial on Thursday at Ashburton,” Williamson said.

Pembrook Playboy

Chris Alcock with the Horse of the Year trophy and cover presented by Southland Harness Award Committee Members Brendon Fahy and Alex Milne

The team will be based at Lavros Lodge in Canterbury, one of the two operations of former Southlander Regan Todd.

Also on the float are Sand Wave, Andy Hall, Millie’s Gift, and Love Lou Longtime who will be joined at the Canterbury base by Get Up N Dance which raced at Addington on Friday night.

Sweet Lou gelding Love Lou Longtime had three starts in April, running two seconds and a third.

“I’ll try and get him cherry ripe for the Cup Day maiden.”

Love Lou Longtime

Although well bred Millie’s Gift hasn’t been on her best behaviour at her last two starts, but she has enough talent to race again at Addington.

“The trip away won’t do her any harm. I’ll race her on Thursday night and see how she progresses.”

Millie’s Gift

Somebeachsomewhere two-year-old Sand Wave looked unlucky at his first start in a new campaign at Wairio on Thursday. He was held up at the business end of the race and ran second to the talented Quaddie VC.

“I’m not sure about starting in the Sires Stakes although he’s paid up. I’d like to have a go at the South of the Waitaki race with him. There is also a suitable race on Show Day in his grade.”

Sand Wave

Andy Hall began his new season on Thursday, running a close third also at the Wairio meeting.

“I was really rapt with him. He hit the line well. He’s not looking as strong as I would like him to be. Although he’s paid up for the Dominion, his goal is just being at the Cup meeting. If you take the top fifteen or so horses out of the trotting rank, he’d be very competitive. In saying that he will go round in the Dominion if he gets a start, and he won’t run last. He’s not a bad horse.”

Andy Hall

Andy Hall is currently ranked 18th in the Dominion with the cut-off point being 15.