YEAR: 2012



Inter-Dominion champion I Can Doosit pretty much wrapped up the Horse Of The Year title with another dominating display in Saturday night's $80,000 NZ Trotting Championship at Addington. This was his eighth straight win dating back to November's Dominion when he made an uncharacteristic break and the sequence includes three Group Ones and two G2s, with two further G1s now seemingly at his mercy back in Auckland in coming weeks - the $200,000 Anzac Cup and $150,000 Rowe Cup.

With his 26th win from just 43 races, which includes five G1s in all, I Can Doosit is now also just $22,000 away from being New Zealand's latest millionaire trotter. In this respect he will join Lyell Creek, Take A Moment and One Over Kenny. So it is getting to a point where one has to ask 'what more can you say' and 'what's left to prove?'. The asnswer to the first question is a little disturbing because I Can Doosit is actually getting better all the time, now being much smoother in his gait.

The big Muscles Yankee gelding has developed tactical speed to compliment his endless staying powers and Mark Purdon used that to great advantage in the Trotting Championship. It was a race which promised to be a wonderful match-up with the remarkable Stig but in the end that clash proved a fizzer. Stig was not a shadow of his former self on this occasion and the writing may well be on the wall for the injury-plagued rising 10-year-old. Improvement is expected the Auckland way, but Paul Nairn will need to somehow find plenty. Instead it was left to Jaccka Jack to run the race of his life for second, and for Clover Don to pick up his third G1 placing.

Breeder-owner Ken Breckon, who has almost certainly wrapped up at least one of those titles for the season as well, is now coming under intense pressure from European interests to take I Can Doosit to the Elitlopp at the end of May, and while that is something he would love to do, logic or common sense would seem dictate it won't be happening for the time being. Taking on the best European trotters over a mile at the 1000m Solvalla track in Sweden at such short notice is a daunting prospect to say the least. Tremendous gate speed is critical when the guns are blazing at the Elitlopp and it is a task which has already proved well beyond Pride Of Petite, Lyell Creek and Sundon's Gift. As a gelding, I Can Doosit is not eligible for the Prix d'Amerique in Paris at the end of January. "I haven't even spoken to Mark about it yet, but with such a big and powerful stable to run, it's hard to imagine when and how he could get away," said Breckon. "Plus I know just how desperate he is to win the Dominion, the one G1 race in New Zealand to elude him," he added.

Purdon has a plan to spell I Can Doosit after the Rowe Cup and set him for the Dominion again, and then there is the likelihood of a new $300,000 race at Melton next February to replace the Inter-Dominions. The 6-year-old I Can Doosit should have won the Dominion in 2010, but after a tough run in record time he was just nutted by Stylish Monarch and a great drive from Ricky May. He was raging hot favourite for this season's event, but he made that rare mistake at the start, and he wasn't at his best that day either. Quite simply, I Can Doosit can win a lot more money by staying at home over the next 12 months, than tackling the best trotters in the world on their home turf.

So the answer to the latter question is a lot easier than finding more superlatives for I Can Doosit. But Breckon is not discounting the idea of taking I Can Doosit on to the world stage if at all possible at some point and he won't be lacking for any encouragement about a "trip away" from wife Karen. "There's some longer distance races on the European Grand Curcuit in our winter which would suit him nicely.

Credit: Frank Marrion writing in HRWeekly 12Apr2012

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