Justice hoping for improvement as Mufasa chases ID23 glory

John Justice is confident Mufasa Metro can come back stronger as he gears up for the 2023 edition of the Inter Dominion Trotting Championship.


In the 2022 final at Melton, the then four-year old finished fourth behind winner Just Believe and rates as one of the leading chances in this year's series at Albion Park, Queensland.

The son of Father Patrick has drawn gate one for his opening heat tonight, which gives Justice an opportunity to dictate terms.

"If he trots away, he should be able to lead because he is pretty fast and just stay in front," the trainer-driver said.

"Chris (Lang) will probably sit outside with Ollivici. Constantinople, I'm not sure what he will do, he might want to come forward too.

"But (it's the) first round of heats (and) we don't want to do too much, but we all want to win."

It's been 22 years since Queensland hosted the Inter Dominion series and the weather in the Sunshine State might play a big factor with temperatures soaring past 30 degrees this afternoon.

"It's a strange track for him and different weather for him. It's really warm up here," Justice said.

"It's not something he will be used to being a New Zealander as well. It's been a bit of a shock to him.

"But in saying that, he has been handling it well. What I have noticed is that horses do race very well in the heat and they like the heat."

The fourth placing in last year's Inter Dominion final gives Justice confidence that his gelding will improve with experience.

"He's only a five-year-old, so he is going to keep improving," he said.

"If you look at a horse like Just Believe, he's a seven-year-old now and he really didn't hit his straps until he was a six-year-old.

"It would be disappointing not to win an Inter Dominion in the next couple of years."

The 2023 Inter Dominion series requires horses to compete in heats – on December 1, 5 and 9 – with points allocated based on finishing positions in those three rounds of qualifiers. From there, the leading 12 pacers and trotters will be selected to contest respective $530,000 and $265,000 finals at the same track on December 16.