Former NSW pacer War Dan Star wins first race in Tasmania

Spreyton trainer Chris Aylett believes New South Wales reject War Dan Star has a good future in Tasmania after the two-year-old opened his winning account in Devonport on Friday night.

WAR DANCE: Driver Rohan Hadley makes a three-wide move at the bell on War Dan Star on his way to a win in Devonport on Friday night. Picture: Greg Mansfield

WAR DANCE: Driver Rohan Hadley makes a three-wide move at the bell on War Dan Star on his way to a win in Devonport on Friday night. Picture: Greg Mansfield

War Dan Star had four unplaced runs for trainer Amanda Turnbull before he was “sacked” and owners Danny Zavitsanos, of Geelong, and Warren Viney, of Spreyton, decided to bring him to Tasmania.

“Dad (Phillip) trained a few for Warren when he first started out in harness racing and he always said he wanted to get me a good horse,” Chris Aylett said.

“This bloke is a good honest little horse and I think he’ll be better next year.”

War Dan Star was backing up after a nose second at Mowbray five days earlier when one of the owners backed him at 40-1.

“He looked like winning that race (when he hit the front in the straight) but the leader kicked back,” Aylett said.

“We’ll go back to Mowbray next week for a heat of the Breeders Crown, because he’s paid up for that, then we’ll see where we go from there.

“He could go on to the Golden Slipper if he’s happy but it would be a big effort for a two-year-old to race that many weeks in a row.”

Driver Rohan Hadley had War Dan Star in the one-one sit until he got flushed out when favourite Dufrense started to go forward about 800m from home.

War Dan Star ($9.12) then sustained a strong run to score a comfortable 5m win over Ideal Karalta and Maybe Jack, with Dufrense ($1.80) unable to go on and beaten 12m into sixth place.

BROTHERS Gareth and Todd Rattray continued their battle for the 2016-17 drivers’ premiership at the final Devonport meeting of the season, with each driving a winner.

Gareth led all the way on the Marc Butler-trained Angelina Rainbow to bring up his 78th win for the season and Todd also led throughout on the Ben Yole-trained Making My Mark for his 74th.

Yole finished the meeting with three winners, also scoring with Last Guy Standing and Four Smart Aces who were both driven by Robert Walters.

Yole now has 104 wins for the season and is only four wins off his 2015-16 tally with eight meetings to go.

THREE novice drivers were also among the winners.

Allister Woods gave a good display aboard Thirlstane King to land the money in the opening race after the $3.60 pop was unable to find his preferred position in front.

Matthew Howlett gave Jaminas Joy a cosy run behind the leader in the third race before getting out on the home turn and running down Svensson to score by a nose.

And, Taylor Ford gave a bold front-running exhibition on Sparkling in race 7 after polemarker and heavily-backed favourite Jilliby Gigi broke at the start.