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Ray Green, pictured with Copy That, has plenty of concerns over the future with a dwindling horse population.

Back to reality for Ray and Copy That - a dire situation where the mane drain is critical

The spectacular success enjoyed by Lincoln Farms’ trainer Ray Green at Queensland’s winter carnival has only served to highlight that urgent changes are needed back home.

Green rounded out a lucrative month in Brisbane at Albion Park on Saturday night when American Dealer won the A$102,000 Queensland Derby, Tommy Lincoln won a A$20,000 support race and Copy That finished fourth in the A$250,000 Blacks A Fake Queensland Championship.

With eight wins, the trio took their combined bankroll to A$253,256 in just a month in the state.

But Green now faces the difficult task of trying to prepare Copy That for Grand Circuit racing in an environment where poor handicapping is fuelling the drain of horses overseas, reducing the number of horses progressing to the higher grades to an alarming extent.

So few cup class horses are now trained in the North Island that Green fears it will be difficult to get enough racing for Copy That.

Few rating 80 and higher horses left in the country

Add Copy That and Krug to the list above and that’s all the horses here rated at 80 or higher. Chase Auckland is now retired.Add Copy That and Krug to the list above and that’s all the horses here rated at 80 or higher. Chase Auckland is now retired.Harness Racing New Zealand figures show only 25 horses are left in the country rated at 80 and above, 23 in the country and Copy That and Krug soon to return from Brisbane campaigns.

Just nine of these are trained in the north, and only five are rating 90 and higher.

Exports are exploding again, 536 and still counting this season.Exports are exploding again, 536 and still counting this season.And the issue is getting worse with bloodstock agents reporting a big upswing in sales in the last two months, June exports reaching 63, the highest for 12 months.

This season, with July to come, we’ve seen the biggest exodus of harness horses to Australia and North America in the last five years, already 536 gone.

And while that number includes a few racehorses who have returned, as well as some shuttle stallions, the comparative totals are still indicative of a major problem that Green says is not being addressed.

The number of foals branded has dropped alarmingly since 2010.The number of foals branded has dropped alarmingly since 2010.The number of branded foals recorded by HRNZ has nearly halved from 2800 in 2010 to just 1522 in 2020, and that’s not the racing population but the total pool, many of which won’t even see a training barn.

“New Zealand racing is in a dire situation and can’t sustain this,” says Green. “So many horses are being sold it’s leaving a huge hole in our population. We can’t continue like this or we’ll end up with four horse fields and then it’s game over.

“I can understand why people sell their horses - because our handicapping system doesn’t allow them to win enough money and the imbeciles here won’t look at handicapping options.”

The horses Lincoln Farms have sent to Queensland in recent years have taken advantage of a far superior system that doesn’t penalise horses so quickly, says Green, keeping them competitive for much longer.

Lincoln Farms plans to leave Tommy Lincoln and Captain Nemo in Queensland to continue to reap those benefits.

Tommy Lincoln, who was having to race the best in New Zealand despite being only a rating 79 horse, has had four starts in Queensland for three wins and still does not have to compete against the free-for-allers.

“On this trip we’ve earned more than a quarter of a million dollars and that’s pretty good,” says Green. “How long would it take to win that money in Auckland?

“If Copy That had stayed home he would have been lucky to have got one start in a month in some manufactured race, probably off a long mark.

“I can see there being no open class racing in the North Island before Christmas.

“There’s some serious stuff to be sorted out and, while I know there’s a meeting of minds going on at the moment, it could be too little, too late - the damage is done. Where are we going to get all the broodmares we need to bring up the racing population?”

Green says the days of people sending their horses from Southland or Auckland to race in Canterbury are numbered - “why would they go there when they can fly to Australia and get so much more opportunity?”

Green says there are a raft of Grand Circuit races on the agenda for Copy That but he hasn’t been able to make any plans yet as no dates have been finalised in a rescheduling of the New Zealand calendar.

“Hopefully by the time we need to get going again with Copy That they’ll have made some decisions.”

The horse is due to fly home on August 8 for a short break.

Is your favourite among those lost?

Haven’t seen your favourite racing for a while? Chances are it’s among the many hundreds who have been sold overseas this season.

Horses exported between August 1, 2020 and July 23, 2021 (including some stallions and a few horses on short campaigns) were:

Australia

Abundance, Accelere, Admirable, Adverse Reaction, Akarana Prince, Aladdin, Aladdin Sane, Alexia Rose, Allonblack, All The Rage, Alluring Tyron, Alpine Retreat, Alta Cassino, Alta Hurrah, Alta Madeira, Alta Sensation, Altimeter, Amarillo Slim, Amazing Dream, American Dealer, American Flyer, American Made, American Shuffle, Anam Nunu, Annerie, Another Masterpiece, Aorangi, Apieceoflou, Aqua Sancta, Arco, Arden Messi, Arden Roanoke, Arden’s Ace, Arocknatthepark, Art Lover, Art’s Bettor Secret, Ascalabus, Avana.

Bad To The Bone, Baileys Knight, Baker Creek, Ball Of Art, Bankers Gold, Barika, Barkley, Barnaby, Bart Maguire, Been To Jenny’s, Belmont Diva, Belmont Royale, Bertie Jones, Bettathanfast, Bettor Blast, Bettor Call Me, Bettor Get It On, Bettor Have Faith, Bionic Stride, B K Swy, Black Edition, Blazing Banner, Blitzembye, Blue Chip Delight, Bondi Shake, Boomchuckalucka, Booraa, Born To Boogie, Bosch, Brantley, Brian Christopher, Brydon Earl, Budvar Eyre, Bull Speed Ahead, Bumpy J, Bundoran, Burnham Boy.

Call Me Keith, Canstar, Captain Dan, Captain Max, Captain Nemo, Captain Pins, Carlos Bromac, Carrera Serena, Cassius, Cassius Bromac, Celebration Stride, Charm Offensive, Chase The Gold, Chase The Hat Trick, Chasing Great, Check In, Cheddar Made Beta, Cheddar Valley, Cherokee Jack, Chevron Art, Chevron Flies, Chiller Bay, Chinski, Christmas Babe, Chubby Checker, Colin Bromac, Colorado Banner, Conspirator, Constitution, Coolhand Easton, Copy That, Corbell, Corker Moment, Cowboys N Bandits, Crackabrie, Croesus, Cuchulainn, Cyclone S Adams.

Dadndave, Davey Mac, Dawson Shard, Deal With Me, Delightful Dude, Delightful GNP, Delightful Major, Demand Respect, Deneuve, Deus Ex, Diego, Distinguished Taste, Don Coyote, Dont Lie To Me, Don’t Tell Tom, Dornoch, Double Up, Doubtless Bay, Dreamers Delight, Duastar, Duke Of Dundee.

Eagle Watch, Easy Pickings, Enhance Your Calm, Euro Beat, Ezana.

Father Brian, Flame Lady, Flash Party, Fleetmaster, Flight Crew, Foregone Conclusion, Forever Bettor, Forget The Price Tag, Forsure, Fortunia, Franco Nandor, Franco Nathan, Franco Riot, Freddiesam, Funky Monkey, Fynn Frost.

Gambit, Gattling, Gayle Force, General Montana, Gil Favor, Give Me A Minute, Glenis’s Mama, Glenledi Chief, Globe Trekker, Going For Gold, Gold Chain, Gold Medley, Goodealehmaddie, Go One Bettor, Gopati, Great Fantasy, Great Presence, Guido Da Siena.

Handsome Harry, Hattie, Havehorsewilltravel, Hawthornden Hunk, Hayden Bromac, Held To Ransom, Hello Gorgeous, Hello It’s Me, Helluva, Hemsworth, He’s A Ladies Man, Hesallmuscle, Hey Sam, Hezacrocwatcher, Hidden Delight, Hittheroadjack, Home And Dry, Honour Stride, Horse Of Course, Hot N Gold, How Doo You Doo, Hugo George, Humble Ladd.

Ideal Draw, Ideal Sports Girl, Ideologist, I’m Jimmy James, In Chevron We Trust, In Flanders Fields, Inherent Royal, In The Spotlight, Ira Poole, Isaac H, Isitwrongtobexcited, Isla’s Joy, Italian Lad, Itsmeantobe, Itz Flash Harriet, I Want It All.

Jacks N Jazz, Jaffa Josh, Jawbreaker, Jay Tee Tyron, Jazzy Star, Jemma, Jimmy The Irishman, Jodi, Johnson Step, Jolene Jolene, Joshua Dylan, Jumpingjackmac, Justamollyarcher, Just As Well.

Kase, Keegan Banner, Kensington Bill, Khaki Nui, King City, Kingmaker, King Of Trumps, Kiwi Jewel, Kiwis Are Flying, Krug, Kusadasi, Kuyomi

La Bella Vita, Lady Ida, Lady Jayne, Lady Loins, Lagertha, La La Land, Lalibela, Lapize, Larry Lincoln, Last Place Lucy, Latina Hall, Lavazza, Lawrence, Leaf Stride, Leer, Leithen Burn, Lennox Bromac, Letherhairdown, Lets Hustle, Lightning Lana, Lillie May, Lils Nightmare, Linebacker, Lislady, L L Cool J, Loch Ness Franco, Longueval, Lotamuscle, Lottie Moon, Louie The Horse, Louis Litt, Louthario, Love A Dance, Luke John.

Mach Little Soaky, Mach Shard, Machs Mareta, Madeakillin, Maestoso, Maggie, Magic Mike, Magicol Ideal, Majestic Hurricane, Majestic Man, Majorca, Major Meister, Major Watson, Man Of Action, Marianna Bromac, Marie Long, Master Stride, Matau Jess, Mazikeen, Melton Beach, Memphis In May, Mexicana, Mia Ragazza, Midnight Assassin, Mighty Flying Art, Mighty Looee, Military Man, Millie Francis, Millwood Jesse, Millwood Manhattan, Mini Me, Minstrel, Miss Mucho, Miss Serenade, Miss Taken, Missucci, Money Honey, Mongolian Cavalry, Mongolian Conqueror, Montana Glory, Montana Jet, Montana Storm, Montefiore, Morningstar Gold, Mr Bohannon, Mr Clooney, Mr Fantastic, Mufasa.

Natty Pagger, Nearis Green, Needamargarita, Nerano, Nikita, Nina Simone, Noble Lavros, No Nukes Skipper, Noosa Beach, Nota Bene Denario.

Oaxacan Dream, Ohoka Chopper, Old Luke, Olivia Rachel, Once Bitten, Onedin Punter, One Majic Kenny, One Over Da Son, Onesmartfella, On The Buzzer, Ontherocks, Our Spitfire.

Paramount Princess, Patriot Stride, Pats Dragon, Payment Plan, Pembrook Charlie, Perfect Cut, Petrea Bromac, Plutonium, Pocket Book, Pocket The Change, Polka Dot Dance, Posh Fella, Potro, Prairie, Pretty Majestic, Prince Of Pleasure, Princess Tiffany, Prodigal Guinness, Punt Away

Queen Elida, Queenofdance, Queen Of Strathfield, Quick As Fire, Quick Step.

Racketeers Boy, Ragazzo Mach, Rakasharp, Reachforthetill, Reckon Im Smart, Red Castleton, Red Envy, Red Reactor, Regal Aspirant, Revitalise, Richard The Third, Richmond Tiger, Riley Moment, Ringo’s A Star, Riteur, Rocket Boy, Rocknroll King, Rocknroll Max, Rock N Roll Waltz, Roll The Dice, Roll With Eunice, Roma Rosa, Royal Essence, Ruby Baby, Russley Rush.

Sagano, Saint Tropez, Sandy’s Ideal, Scott Real Speed, Seamark, See Ya Write, Sekkie Monkey, Sense Of Occasion, Set Me Free, Shadow Minister, Shanhill, Shanlou, Sheffield Sparky, Silent Rapture, Silver Surfer, Simply Shaz, Sir Lincoln, Skippys Delight, Skye Mary Mac, Skyzrclearnsunny, Smoken Shazza, Smooth Deal, Social Media, Souffle, Soundslikeart, Southern Belle, Spankem, Spellbound, Spikey Boy, Spirited Belle, Spirit Of Anzac, Spirit Of St Louis, Sportingjoy, Sport Mental, Square Dealer, Stamford, Star Galleria, Starlight Stride, Starlito, Star Of Timpany, Star Ruler, Stars N Bars, Starvin Marvin, Star Watch, Stavros The Terror, Stealth Bomba, Stick Man, Stinger Lindenny, Stratofortress, Stun Gun, Stylish Memphis, Styx Kiwi, Sugarinspice, Summer Pants, Sunny Petite, Surfers Delight, Sweet American, Sweet Chariot, Sweet Heaven, Sweet Jesse, Sweet On You, Swiss Miss.

Tact Fergie, Tailored Elegance, Takemetothebeach, Take My Wallet, Tango Tara, Targaryen, Tartan Robyn, Tears Of Joy, Tell Me This, Tenzing Bromac, Terror The Christian, Terrortorial, Texas Red, Texas Tara, Texas Tiger, The Banker, The Batmobile, The Croupier, The General, The Hustler, The Kapiti Express, The Kingsman, The Paua Diver, The Vicars Daughter, The Whizard, The Whiz Kid, This Is Bettor, Three Rivers, Thug Rose, Thumbs Up, Ticktockpocketwatch, Toby O’Gara, Tommy Lincoln, Toro Stride, Touche, Tough Monarch, Town Echo, Treasure Me, Tricky Ric, Triple Eight, Triple VC, Trix Of Time, Tuxedo Bromac.

Ultimate Machete, Ultimate Rocker, Ultimate Sniper, Ultimate Stride, Ultimate Temptation, Under Wraps, Unfinished Business, Urus.

Valley Star, Verstappen, Vespa, Vincent Van Gone, Vindicate, Virginia Cool, Vulcan Star.

Wainui Creek, Wat A Feeling, Wattlebank Lass, What’s Your Secret, Whatwillbeewillbee, Whisky Neat, White Lightning, Whole Lotta Rosie, Who’s My Mother, Wildestdreams, Windsor, With Revenge, Woodlands Rose, Would You Mind, Write About Angus.

Xebec.

Yahoo, Yellowstone, Yorkshire, Young Conqueror, You Really Got Me, You’re So Fine.

Zaccy Mac, Zambia, Zeus Dan.

Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed, Unnamed.

Canada

Bettor’s Delight, The Bandit Queen

United States

A Delightful Act, Ashley Locaz, Belmont Major, Bettor’s Heart, Beyond Words, Burlington, Captain Crunch, Delightful Catherine, Downbytheseaside, He’s Gratis, Im A Gigolo, Itz Alldown To Luck, J Bee, Kickupyaheels, Let’s Fly Together, Mossdale Lottee, Nandolo, Nevada, Nui Ba Den, On The Cards, Rydgemont Son, Sheriff, Sweet Lou, Tyron’s Bit Of Lemon, Underthesouthernsun, Watch Me Now, What The Hill.

Our runners this week

Saturday night at Albion Park

Argyle.

Our runners this week: How our trainer rates them

Ray Green

Ray’s comments

Friday night at Auckland

Race 2: Frisco Bay
6.40pm

“He obviously needed the run last week. He pulled his way round the field and sat outside the leader but he couldn’t cop a run like that first-up and got tired. The ability is there, whether he’s fit enough or not we’ll find out. But I expect him to go well, the three draw is much better than last week.”

Race 2: Lenny Lincoln
6.40pm

“He’ll probably need a race but he’s capable of running a slot. He’s unlucky not to have won a race, all three of his seconds were good. He’s got a bit better with each of his trials this time in and he got home well last Saturday, after coming widest on the turn.”

Race 3: Obadiah Dragon
7.10pm

“The way the race was run at Cambridge last week, his effort wasn’t bad at all. Moni (Monika Ranger) said he felt strong and, if he’d been a few slots closer, he would have been right in it. He’ll be improved for the run.”

Race 3: Leo Lincoln
7.10pm

“He’s very consistent - he’s only missed a couple of cheques. But he’s another just coming back and should improve with the run.”

Dan Costello Race Photography