Nathan expects High Energy to be hard to beat in the NZ Trotting Oaks on Friday but says she will be a better filly for the race.

“I think we are going to be all right the way she trialled. That was when we decided to press on to the Oaks.It has been a little touch and go and whatever she does on Friday she will be better for the run”

The problem was the end of High Energy’s Australian campaign in October when she stunningly faded out of the Need For Speed Princess final at Melton for the only unplaced run of her career.

“She got quite sick over there. It needed treatment and 10 days in the paddock when she got home for her to come right and then we thought we were up against it to make the Oaks. But with luck I think we might have done it’

High Energy was peaking 12 months ago winning the Sires Stakes and the Ace of Hearts, 2 year old trotting section, and she will be seeking the 3 year old version next week. Notably athletic she won’t be any easybeat in the major events coming up either.

On the other hand Nathan rates Look To Da Stars ready to the minute for the two year old Sires Stakes Final with the draw one area of concern. Coming back off the unruly list has not made the difference hoped with the outside of the second row gate.

“The fact he was almost alongside High Energy in his trial showed me he is ready. He had to do a lot of work last time.He stuck on in great style  and hopefully we will get a kinder run this time in spite of the gate”

Look To Da Stars will be looking to last start winner Head Em Up having headed that runner at his previous start. 

Treacherous Baby and Madrid will resume their rivalry and versus others in the 2yo fillies Grand Prix prelude with Treacherous Baby perhaps still holding an edge despite the draw favouring Madrid. Millwood Nike and Don’t Stop Dreaming should be playing “Same again Sam” music in their events which are tune ups for the Grand Prix day.

At Methven on Sunday Oscar Bonavena takes on the trotting version of the Green Mile going into the race fit and well and nothing left to prove on grass. Michael throws down the gauntlet again with Mystic Max and also with a proven grass record

 On Saturday there is an interesting experiment at Motukarara when the at times enigmatic Franco Indie returns to the grass in the Akaroa Cup with Blair doing the honours.

“We don’t think it was the grass track was the problem ( Methven Cup,October,his only other grass start). He was just below his best anyway so we don’t have any worries there that it was the surface.He has been training well” Nathan said

Eyeliner meanwhile will tackle the historic Thelma Memorial from the ace draw which can be the difference between winning and not for the daughter of Lazarus

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