Preview for last round of Inter Dominion heats

DISCARD Swayzee for the Inter Dominion final at your own peril.

That’s the warning from his driver Cam Hart, who insists the star pacer actually went up his estimations despite suffering the first defeat in his past 11 races in the second round of Inter Dominion heats at Albion Park last Tuesday night.

“I don’t understand anyone knocking his run,” he said “I thought he went huge … it was one of his best runs.

“They went super time, he was off the track (three-wide) for the last 850m in a series where being on the pegs has been gold.

“He just kept coming and I loved the way he ran through the line. He was in front 100m after the line.”

Jason Grimson and Cam Hart after Swayzee's New Zealand Cup heroics. Photo courtesy: HRNZ

Swayzee’s emergence has been built around his staying prowess, so stretching out for the longer 2680m trip for Saturday night’s last round of heats and the Grand Final will suit him ideally.

“I felt the first sprint heat (1660m) would be his most difficult, but he found the front and won and even 2138m the other night was a bit short. Getting to the 2680m is right in his wheelhouse,” Hart said.

“It’s similar with Leap To Fame. He won Tuesday, but only just. The shorter races bring he and Swayzee back to the others a bit, but get them out to staying races and those extra few hundred metres really make a difference.”

Cam Hart guides Swayzee to a commanding victory in the Inter Dominion Heat 1.

Just like last Tuesday, Swayzee has another awkward draw to overcome Saturday night.

“Inside the back (gate eight) the other night and now barrier one Saturday, they’re probably the two worst barriers for him,” Hart said.

“He’ll get out better than people realise, but I doubt he’ll hold the front. But it’s 2680m and I’ll back myself to get him away from the inside at some stage so he can show his strength.”

Hart also expects to be crossed at the start aboard the brilliant and in-form Nerano from gate one in his third-round heat.

“He could hold the front if I really buzzed him out, but I’m not sure that suits him. I’d be happy behind the leader or even three pegs because he’s shown how fast he can sprint home off a cold sit.

“He was brilliant on Tuesday. I’ve said he’s as fast a horse as I’ve driven over 200-300m and he’s right in the zone at the moment.”

Hart teams up again with exciting young Victorian trotter Plymouth Chubb, the first of the two trotting heats on Saturday night.

“Queen Elida has drawn inside and she definitely went better after a tough run on Tuesday, but I’m not sure that’s an ideal run to have in the middle part of the series,” he said.

“Plymouth Chubb beat her so easily off a sit on opening night. If I can slot in somewhere again and get that last crack at her, I think I’ve got a great chance of beating her again.”

Trainer Peter Manning confirmed his daughter, Kerryn, who has won 17 races on Plymouth Chubb, would be back aboard for Saturday week’s Grand Final.

Kerryn was cleared to resume driving this week after two month’s sidelined by three fractures in a wrist following a fall at Melton on October 7.

By Adam Hamilton