“We’re extremely pleased with his 1:54 effort on a cold night at Melton.  He’s not fully wound up yet.”

The speaker is Aldebaran Park principal Duncan McPherson OAM after watching his homebred star Aldebaran Zeus outsprint a smart field in the Aldebaran Park Trotters Free-for-all last Saturday night.

“We are on the holy grail now. We want to concentrate on the major mile races around Australia and New Zealand over the next 12 months or so, the ultimate objective being to establish him as a Southern Hemisphere bred stallion that will be in demand by breeders in the 2025/26 stud season,” Duncan stated.

“From Aldebaran Park’s point-of-view we see him as the successor to Skyvalley NZ at the farm. Skyvalley’s doing a super job. He has been the nine-time leading colonial bred trotting sire.

“We are confident that Aldebaran Zeus is about to take over the mantle from Skyvalley NZ. We want to make sure that Aldebaran Park continues long into the future with its genetical improvement and we see Aldebaran Zeus, who is a proven globally competitive horse following his racing in North America which featured him placing fifth in the $1million Yonkers International Trot, as being a major part of the succession plan at the farm.”

The Muscle Hill six-year-old will continue to race through the winter and spring predominantly in Victoria with the Australasian Trotters Championship at the end of August being the first target.

The Inter Dominion is under consideration with his main targets being the $75,000 Bill Collins Sprint at Melton, the $75,000 Maori Mile at Bendigo, the $300,000 Great Southern Star at Melton and the $100,000 The Hammerhead at Menangle.

Another tilt at the NZ feature mile races at Cambridge which include the $50,000 Waikato Flying Mile and the $575,000 TAB Trot Slot is also being considered for Aldebaran Zeus.

“It will be a similar path to what we’ve tread before,” McPherson said.

“We’re looking forward to him standing proudly as a southern hemispherical, globally bred stallion with an international record.”

Aldebaran Zeus lacks nothing on the score of performance and pedigree. Apart from being by world champion sire Muscle Hill USA, with a bankroll of almost $540,000, Aldebaran Zeus is out of the Swedish mare Zoia Boko, by the Italian sire Viking Kronos from the American-bred Ouzo Boko, by the Hambletonian winner Victory Dream.

Aldebaran Zeus’s Melton triumph was the highlight of a brilliant week for Aldebaran Park sired or bred performers.

Other winners included the three-year-olds Aldebaran Campbell and Aldebaran Marshall, Aldebaran Stiles and the two-year-old Myheartbeatstrue (both by Aldebaran Eagle USA) and Watch And Act (by Skyvalley NZ).

Pat Driscoll’s Yabby Dam Farms will hold a stand alone production sale online via AuctionsPlus on July 23 and 24. The quality lineup comprises 15 trotting broodmares in foal or ready to go in foal this season. Catalogues and further details are available from Nutrien Equine

Respected Goulburn Valley breeder Helen Head bred the recent Newcastle winner in The Fortunate Son, a winner of over $120,000

Ballarat breeders Bruce and Vicki Edward, of Durham Park Standardbreds, landed a double at Tioga Downs, New York on Sunday with Tam Major (1:51.4) and Bettor Roll On (1:53.2)

The opinions expressed in The Forum are those of the author and may not be attributed to or represent policies of Harness Racing Victoria, which is the state authority and owner of thetrots.com.au.

Picture: Club Menangle