The great Breeders Crown Clash this week

The great Breeders Crown Clash this week

This is racing’s Trans-Tasman rivalry at its very best.

New Zealand’s megastar filly Bettor Twist is primed and powerful after three Aussie runs as she heads into Saturday night’s Group 1 Breeders Crown 3YO fillies’ final at Melton.

Waiting for her will be the best crop of Aussie fillies for more than a decade, headed by Emma Stewart and Clayton Tonkin’s pack of angels: Ladies In Red, Tough Tilly, Beach Music and Joanna.

Stewart and Tonkin qualified half the field – six of the 12 runners – for the final.

Bettor Twist is the full Kiwi-package. She’s been nurtured by the greatest Kiwi horseman Mark Purdon, is now trained by his son Nathan, is bred and raced by the huge Breckon Farms operation and is driven by one of the best drivers NZ’s produced in Anthony Butt.

The Bettor Twist team knew exactly what was awaiting them in Australia, but still backed her to take on the almighty challenge.

After two fantastic runs in defeat, Bettor Twist finally drew well, found the lead and smashed the clock late to win her first clash with Ladies In Red, who went into the race with just two defeats in 15 starts.

It inspired Butt to talk tough about the final.

“She doesn’t give you a great feel for a champion filly, but she’s bottomless, that’s her great strength,” he said.

“Some of the others might be as fast as her, but I don’t if they are as tough. I have to drive her to her strength.

“I told Nathan (Purdon, trainer) a few weeks ago, ‘let’s get through to the final and then I’ll turn it into a war for the last mile’.”

While Bettor Twist and Ladies In Red are the glamour girls, it’s clear Beach Music and Joanna have improved enough this season to beat them with the right run.

And then there’s Tough Tilly, who inflicted Ladies In Red’s only defeat last season, and is building nicely after two runs back from a small operation to fix a breathing issue.

The barrier draw is live on HRV’s TrotsVision from 7pm and it will certainly reshape betting and possible the outcome of the race.

The 3YO fillies‘ final is one of eight Group 1 races on the stellar card at Melton Saturday night.

Adam Hamilton
Courtesy of RaceNet