POWER couple Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen have once again dominated New Zealand’s Harness Jewels day.
Turning the program into their own special event recent years, the duo captured six of the nine Group Ones on the card.
Since becoming a training partnership in 2014, Purdon and Rasmussen have won an incredible 23 Jewels Finals.
Last year they annexed four Group One deciders, which followed five in 2016.
They also registered a quintet in 2015 and a treble in 2014. Their amazing haul also includes numerous quinellas and trifectas.
“The Jewels has been a pretty good day for us in recent years,” Purdon said. “We’ve been fortunate to have enjoyed a lot of success on the days.”
Opening the afternoon on a high, Purdon and Rasmussen scored with Princess Tiffany, which proved too slick in the Two-Year-Old Fillies’ Diamond.
Driven by Rasmussen, the daughter of Art Major accounted for Arma Indie and Havtime in 1:54.2 over the mile.
“She is a super filly which just feels like an older horse,” Rasmussen said. “She has just got such an amazing turn of speed and her toughness and manners set her apart.”
Purdon then made his way into the winners’ circle following Enhance Your Calm’s victory, which gave the couple an early double.
Never seriously challenged, the trotter scored from Full Noise and Cheerfull, which is a stablemate of the winner.
Covering the mile in 1:59.4, the son of Majestic Son provided longtime Australian owner Danny Zavitsanos and his wife, Joanne, with their maiden top-shelf triumph.
The Purdon/Rasmussen Aussie connection continued in the next event when boom filly Shez All Rock outclassed her opposition.
With Purdon holding the reins, the daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven cruised to a soft win from Dizzy Miss Lizzy and Elle Mac.
An Australian Pacing Gold purchase, Shez All Rock extended her record to an imposing nine wins from 10 starts by stopping the clock in a brilliant 1:51.8.
“She really did it on her own today,” Purdon said. “She just rolled along, enjoyed her work and never gave me any problems. I just had to enjoy the ride.”
Tim Williams then provided the All Stars Stable with their fourth success when he combined with Another Masterpiece in the Two-Year-Old Emerald.
Already the winner of the Yearling Sales Final, the two-year-old improved his record to five wins and three placings from eight starts by scoring from Aussie raider, Petes Big Jim, and Jesse Duke, which is a stablemate of the winner.
“He has been honest all season and today we were lucky enough to come up with a good barrier and the horse did the rest,” Williams said.
“I cannot thank Mark and Natalie enough for what they have done for me. I am lucky I have been on this horse from day one and I am glad the horse is repaying the faith.”
Rasmussen was again to the fore when she partnered Eamon Maguire to glory in the Four-Year-Old Emerald.
After dashing to the front along the home straight, the son of Art Major staved off a late charge from Star Galleria to win by a head in 1:51.9. A G’s White Socks was a length away third.
Winterfell rounded out the sextet when he emerged triumphant over Mopnaro Mia and Australian star, Wobelee.
Driven by Purdon, the son of Majestic Son covered the mile in 1:59.8.
“He felt strong in the running and was trotting good and solid.” Purdon said. “He was little bit rocky on the turn, but never felt like he would have broken.
“I think he will furnish into a lovely open class horse next season.”