POWER couple Natalie Rasmussen and Mark Purdon enjoyed another evening of Group One domination last night.
Not only did the duo win three of four top shelf events on New Zealand’s north island, they also captured the one on the south island.
In fact, they filled the trifecta in the latter!
“It was a terrific night for the stable,” Purdon said. “The team did very well on both islands.”
One Change led the south island crew as he proved too good in the NZ Yearling Sale Final.
Driven by Samantha Ottley, One Change scored by a nose from Smooth Deal, with Flying Even Bettor a neck away third in 1:57.1 over 1980 metres.
“It was a great result,” Purdon said. “We had three nice horses in the race, but you don’t expect to run first three.
“The winner has the Sires’ in a fortnight then on to the Jewels.”
In the north Purdon and Rasmussen’s Group One triple treat was led by Spankem, which continued his remarkable season.
Fresh from his Taylor Mile triumph in Auckland last week, the son of Bettors Delight returned to the venue to annex the Messenger Championship.
With Rasmusen holding the reins, Spankem accounted for his stablemate, Turn It Up, with Mach Shard – trained by Purdon’s brother, Barry – third in 1:57.7 over 2700 metres.
“That was another tremendous run from him,” Purdon said. “He has had a terrific season, which has been far more successful than we thought it would be.
“The trip to Melbourne for the Inter Dominion, then up to Sydney for the Miracle Mile has made him.
“He is in the Jewels but I will withdraw him on Monday to give him a longer spell before the New Zealand Cup.”
While Spankem is set to miss the Jewels, the series remains on the hit list for his fellow Group One winners Enhance Your Calm and Sweet On Me.
Despite making an early mistake, Enhance Your Calm was a strong winner of the Northern Trotting Derby.
Driven by Purdon, the son of Majestic Son rated 2:03.2 over 2700 metres as Resonate and Gil Favor filled the placings.
“He was very good after early mistake,” Purdon said. “He was faultless in his gait after that and did very well.
“He gave me the feeling like an open class trotter in the making.”
Also driven by Purdon Sweet On Me completed a length win from her stablemate, Amazing Dream, with Tiffany Rose a length away third.
Rating 1:57.3 over 1700 metres, the daughter of Sweet Lou stretched her record to five wins and a second from six starts.
“She will head to the Jewels now then for a break which means she won’t go Melbourne for the Breeders’ Crown,” Purdon said. “She has a bone chip in one knee, and although it’s not worrying her, the vet advised not to leave it there.
“So she will have that removed after the Jewels.”