The race to be crowned the 2021 Australian Pacing Gold Trotting Master has been run and won with Kiwi sensation Sundees Son safely claiming the title following his sensational efforts throughout the year.
Sundees Son won all three events staged on home soil including the ANZAC and Rowe Cups at Alexandra Park, Auckland before his astonishing display in last month’s Dominion at Addington, Christchurch.
In total, Sundees Son has won three of the five APG Trotting Masters events this year with Tornado Valley (Great Southern Star) and Majestic Man (Grand Prix) claiming the Australian features.
Sundees Son has amassed 300 points while his nearest rival is Majestic Man with 181 points after contesting every feature of the season.
This Saturday night, the final leg of the season takes place with the running of the $150,000 TAB Inter Dominion Grand Final set to be staged at TABCORP Park, Menangle over the marathon distance of 3009m.
It is the first time a trotting Grand Final has been staged at the venue.
The Phil Williamson prepared Majestic Man is looking for his second major victory of the year and commenced the series with a victory before being unplaced in his other two heats.
Champion reinsman Anthony Butt will take the drive as he chases his fourth Inter Dominion Grand Final following victories with Lyell Creek (2000) and Take A Moment (2001 & 2003).
Skilled conditioner Brent Lilley, now based in Victoria, won the last Trotting series staged in Sydney when Game Bid proved triumphant at Harold Park back in 2002.
On Saturday, the impeccably bred Kyvalley Chief represents his stable with Chris Alford booked to drive.
Another previous Inter Dominion winner is Richard Brosnan, who scored back in 1979 when No Response produced a devastating sprint to score at Addington, Christchurch.
Now training in partnership with his son Emmett and based in Victoria, they will be represented by Maori Law, a genuine threat with Greg Sugars booked to drive.
The famous livery made famous by Maori’s Idol and then Sumthingaboutmaori will be worn this weekend by mighty mare Pink Galahs, one of two runners prepared by Mattie Craven.
Heat winner Lotamuscle also steps out with Sofia Arvidsson taking the drive, the only female driver competing in the final.
Craven is the only trainer with dual representation.
The Penny Drops is strongly fancied for trainer Ray Harvey and driver Grant Campbell following excellent efforts throughout the series and will relish the staying trip.
Fellow Victorians Just Believe (Michael Hughes/Rod Petroff) and Illawong Stardust (Tony Peacock/Brian Gath) both have realistic chances following some handy efforts throughout the series.
The host state is represented by Tough Monarch, prepared by Rickie Alchin and to be driven by Robbie Morris, the multiple feature race winner failed to claim a heat but still rates as a winning chance.
Blake Fitzpatrick has Caligula in the mix while Humble Ladd represents Belinda and Luke McCarthy.
Throughout the series, no trotter has dominated with unheralded local performer Timothy Red the only multiple heat winner for trainers, Joe and Mary Rando and driver Cameron Hart.
While the 2021 APG Trotting Masters has been dominated by Sundees Son, the Inter Dominion Grand Final has quickly become the most open race of the season.