Inter Dominion 2019: Inter setback as Aussies suffer another blow with gun trotter McLovin withdrawn

Australia

Australia’s defence of the Inter Dominion trotting crown has been cruelled yet again with another runner withdrawn from the coveted series at Auckland’s Alexandra Park.

Trainer Andy Gath officially gave-up the fight to get McLovin to Tuesday night’s second round of qualifying heats at Auckland’s Alexandra Park when swelling appeared in all four legs.

McLovin has been under a cloud since requiring treatment last Thursday and being granted to miss opening night and “re-enter” the series on Tuesday.

“Just when everything looked back on target, one of his legs blew-up yesterday,” Gath said. “By this morning, all four legs were swollen. It means he’s got a viral infection. He can’t race.”

It ends the hopes of Gath and his wife, driver Kate Gath, to defend the Inter Dominion trotting crown they won in Melbourne last year with stablemate Tornado Valley.

“He’s out for a couple of weeks in the paddock here now and then he’ll fly back home and we’ll see how he is before trying to work out the rest of the season,” Gath said.

It leaves just two Aussies in the trotting series, while eight Australian-trained runners will line-up in Tuesday night’s second round of pacing heats.

Australia’s top-rated trotter, Tough Monarch, is under the pump after leading and tiring uncharacteristically to finish seventh on opening night. He’s drawn for a soft run from inside the back row (gate nine) on Tuesday night and needs a top-four finish to remain a serious chance of making the final.

Our other trotter, Victoria’s Big Jack Hammer, ran third after leading on night one, but has a big task from a wide draw (gate seven) in the same heat as Tough Monarch on Tuesday night.

The key pacing heat for Australia on Tuesday night sees star Victorian veteran San Carlo ($8 with TAB) drawn to lead from the pole and one-time series favourite, Bling It On ($5.50), likely to follow him everywhere from inside the back row (gate nine).

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But they have to content with the two stars of opening night, All Stars’ stablemates Ultimate Sniper (gate seven, $1.95) and Cruz Bromac (eight, $4.40).

Another All Stars runner, Chase Auckland, dominates betting at $1.75 in the first of Tuesday night’s pacing heats.

He looks the leader and perfectly suited by the sprint 1700m trip.

It’s a crucial heat for Queensland’s top pacer, Colt Thirty One, who only ran ninth on opening. He’s drawn five and must finish top three or four to remain in final contention.

Victorian sit-sprinter My Kiwi Mate is drawn to follow Chase Auckland, which suits his style.

As well as Sky Racing’s usual coverage, showcased coverage of the remaining three nights of the Inter Dominion can be seen on the Sky Racing Active App.

TAB’S INTER DOMINION FINALS

PACERS

$2.50 Ultimate Sniper

$4.50 Cruz Bromac

$5 Thefixer

$5.50 Chase Auckland

$9 Bling It On

$11 Ashley Locaz

$15 AG’s White Socks

$16 Triple Eight

$17 Colt Thirty One, San Carlo

$41 or better others

TROTTERS

$3 Marcoola

$3.80 Winterfell

$4.50 Habibi Inta

$5 Massive Metro

$7 Majestic Man

$15 Paramount King, Tough Monarch

$17 Temporale

$21 Big Jack Hammer

$35 or better others

Market: TAB Fixed Odds

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