Sanderson on a mission to claim South Australian Pacing Cup

Shane Sanderson will have three chances at South Australian Pacing Cup glory this Saturday night.

RSN Harness Racing
RSN Harness Racing Picture: RSN

The Charlton trainer is spending the week across the border preparing his team of Perfect Stride, Platinum Stride and Sahara Tiger after all horses qualified for the $60,000 final at Globe Derby.

Perfect Stride came with a late charge to claim second behind Wheres The Gold in the opening heat last Friday night before Platinum Stride capitalised on an error by Gaita Pullicino – who mistook the laps and went for home early aboard favourite Like A Wildfire - to win the second qualifier ahead of third-placed stablemate Sahara Tiger.

Sanderson said his son Ryan would likely wait until barrier draws to decide whether he would drive Perfect Stride or Platinum Stride, with daughter Abby to take the steer of the other and Anthony Butt to partner Sahara Tiger like he did in the heats.

"It's a unique situation I find myself in – I actually don't think there's anything between these three," Sanderson told RadioTAB's Mobile Rolling.

"They're all a little bit different in their racing patterns, but I'm not sure.

"You'd probably say Perfect on his class and what he's done as a young horse, but I honestly think any one of the three has got the capability to win the race, but they would definitely need the right run."

Victorian-trained horses dominate the South Australian Pacing Cup final, with Hot Deal (Aaron Dunn) and Ultimate Vinnie (Sam Barker) joining Wheres The Gold and Perfect Stride as qualifiers from heat one, and Western Sonador (Stephen O'Donoghue and Rebecca Bartley) progressing through heat two with Platinum Stride and Sahara Tiger.

Andy Gath-trained Tango Tara won the Kadina Pacing Cup at Globe Derby on October 10 to gain automatic entry into the race.

Stewart-trained Our Vinnie won the second of the SA Pacing Derby heats last Friday and will likely start a short-priced favourite in the race this weekend.

He will be joined in the $30,000 final by Dunn-trained Little Louie - who could only manage fourth as a strong punters' elect in the other qualifier - and Sandra O'Connor's Powersofpersuasion.

Victorian squaregaiters also make up a large part of the field in the SA Trotters Cup.

Anywhere Hugo won the opening heat last Friday night for trainer Chris Svanosio, with Travel Bug (Shaun and Jason McNaulty), Blue Coman (Greg Norman) and Itz Trixton Time (Sonya Smith) progressing after top four finishes. Stewart's trotter Hesallmuscle was runner-up in the second qualifier to be the other Victorian in the $40,000 final.