2016 Group 3 Howard Ashton final – odds, tips & betting preview

BOOM youngster Harbormaster will be out to secure the biggest win of his short career this Thursday night when he contests the Group 3 Howard Ashton final at Angle Park.

Installed as the $3.70 favourite with Crownbet, the light brindle dog comes into the feature having won six of his 10 starts to date, with a sizzling 29.61 personal best over the track and trip. The son of Cosmic Chief and Wilkena qualified for the $25,000 to the winner race when running second behind Wilba Beast in his semi-final last Thursday, but appears well drawn out in box eight to make amends for that defeat.

The chaser given the best chance to topple the favourite is box six runner Team Roper for trainer Allan McCulloch. Rated a $4 chance, the black dog has the imposing record of 11 wins and five minor placings from just 20 outings, with the box draw seemingly not too much of a disadvantage with no early speed drawn directly on his inside or outside.

If Wilba Beast ($4.20) can reproduce his best early sectional of 4.35 to the first mark he should also be right in contention, with the frontrunner drawn reasonably well in box three. The son of El Galo and Mighty Chaos also holds the fastest time of the field over the 515m distance, having stopped the clock in a blistering 29.55 when finishing second behind Hukanui in his heat of the series.

Todd Kelly has two chances of taking home the title, his best chance according to bookies being Paddy McBain at $5 with Crownbet. The black dog qualified for the final when finishing third behind McLaren Missile and Team Roper in his heat, but will get the chance to turn the tables in the final after coming up with box two.

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Kelly’s other runner is Garry McBain which is the rank outsider of the field at $81.

Also with two contenders in the race is Tania Foster who will put the polish on litter mates McLaren Missile ($6) and Billy McLaren ($51). McLaren Missile has drawn the coveted rails alley for the showpiece, but will have to do everything right at box rise as there is a huge amount of speed in the event.

The field is rounded out by Don’t Kid Me ($13) for Ray Fewings which comes into the final with a 29.80 personal best over the distance, but is drawn awkwardly in box four.

The Group 3 Howard Ashton is race eight on the card at Angle Park this Thursday and is set to jump at 9:39pm.

Box One – McLaren Missile
Black Dog – 31.4kg – February 2014
Cosmic Chief x Stevie McLaren
Prize money: $7,755
Trainer: Tania Foster
Career: 19: 4-1-6
Box: 2: 1-0-1
TD: 18: 4-1-5
TD Best: 29.74

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $6 with Crownbet

Box Two – Paddy McBain
Black Dog – 32.6kg – February 2014
Kinloch Brae x Flame McBain
Prize money: $23,015
Trainer: Todd Kelly
Career: 49: 13-6-11
Box: 7: 1-2-3
TD: 34: 10-3-8
TD Best: 29.69

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $5 with Crownbet

Box Three – Wilba Beast
Black Dog – 31.1kg – February 2014
El Galo x Mighty Chaos
Prize money: $18,380
Trainer: Ben Rawlings
Career: 25: 14-4-2
Box: 4: 1-1-1
TD: 14: 7-3-1
TD Best: 29.55

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $4.20 with Crownbet

Box Four – Don’t Kid Me
Black Dog – 31.6kg – April 2014
Lochinvar Marlow x Clinga
Prize money: $10,570
Trainer: Ray Fewings
Career: 25: 9-6-3
Box: 2: 0-1-0
TD: 15: 4-4-3
TD Best: 29.80

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $13 with Crownbet

Box Five – Garry McBain
Black Dog – 30.6kg – February 2014
Kinloch Brae x Flame McBain
Prize money: $5,085
Trainer: Todd Kelly
Career: 54: 2-10-6
Box: 6: 0-1-0
TD: 28: 1-5-3
TD Best: 30.15

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $81 with Crownbet

Box Six – Team Roper
Black Dog – 30.9kg – March 2014
Fabregas x Allinga Aye Jay
Prize money: $14,295
Trainer: Alan McCulloch
Career: 20: 11-0-5
Box: 5: 3-0-2
TD: 15: 9-0-3
TD Best: 29.70

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $4 with Crownbet

Box Seven – Billy McLaren
Black Dog – 31.6kg – February 2014
Cosmic Chief x Stevie McLaren
Prize money: $4,810
Trainer: Tania Foster
Career: 13: 4-0-4
Box: 4: 3-0-1
TD: 12: 4-0-4
TD Best: 29.99

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $51 with Crownbet

Box Eight – Harbormaster
Light Brindle Dog – 33.4kg – April 2014
Cosmic Chief x Wilkena
Prize money: $9,300
Trainer: Kirin Corby
Career: 10: 6-1-0
Box: 1: 1-0-0
TD: 10: 6-1-0
TD Best: 29.61

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $3.70 with Crownbet

1st Res – Relton
Black Dog – 28.2kg – March 2014
Magic Sprite x Niamh Premier
Prize money: $7,340
Trainer: Robin Harnas
Career: 18: 4-3-2
Box: N/A
TD: 14: 3-2-2
TD Best: 29.62

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $10 with Crownbet

2nd Res – Dakota Barbie
Fawn Bitch – 26.9kg – January 2014
Dyna Tron x Gable La Flash
Prize money: $9,655
Trainer: Kerry Stagg
Career: 19: 7-4-5
Box: NA
TD: 19: 7-4-5
TD Best: 29.80

Odds to win the Howard-Ashton: $17 with Crownbet

Tips: 8 – 3 – 6 – 1