NEWS PREVIEW

Pike frustrated with inaction on race surfaces issue

“What can you say, it’s just a complete embarrassment for the Industry, said Pike.
“I think we are all aware that the weather can play havoc at times but the circumstances around some of the abandonments in the last week are ridiculous and we just can’t carry on like this.
“The livelihoods of so many people are being put in serious jeopardy and I just don’t know how much more we can take.”
Pike is seeking urgent action from governing body, New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing (NZTR), to address the issue.
“I have heard there could be a meeting at NZTR this week which just can’t come quick enough,” he said.
“I’m sure they are aware of just what the implications are for the Industry,so we will be looking to see what comes out of this and how they intend to implement any measures to address the situation.”
Meanwhile Pike is looking forward to Saturday’s Trentham meeting where talented three-year-old Haussmann will tackle the 1 Grant Plumbing Levin Classic (1600m).
Pike is prepared to forgive the Pour Moi gelding’s last start effort where he only battled over the concluding stages of the 2 Jamieson Park Auckland Guineas (1600m) after looking a distinct threat when looming into contention on the home corner.
“We had been expecting a big run from him but with the heavy rain they got and the change in the track conditions, it just played against him,” said Pike.
“He couldn’t handle the track which got very shifty, especially on the home bend, so he really only battled away. He struck similar conditions when he failed in the Hawkes Bay Guineas, so we are prepared to just write this one off and concentrate on Trentham now.
“He doesn’t seem to have taken any harm from the race and if we can get conditions to suit I think he will definitely be a contender on Saturday.”
Pike had intended to have a two-pronged attack on Saturday’s Group One feature but a change of plan for 1 New Zealand 2000 Guineas placegetter Ever Loyal will see him line-up at Ellerslie on Sunday instead.
“Ever Loyal will go to a three-year-old 7 1⁄2 f race at Ellerslie instead of Trentham,” he said.
“He has the three-year-old Karaka Million Classic as his main target a fortnight later so the race this Sunday fits in nicely for him.”

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