WAYNE Krause has called Ballarat home for almost 30 years.
In that time, he has enjoyed a marvellous run of success as a standardbred breeder and owner with other Western Victorian harness racing enthusiasts David and Terry Lewis.
So much so that Krause has just about lost count of the race wins he has had.
And he has grand broodmare Frosty Again to thank for it.
Frosty Again had anything but a glamourous racing career, winning a couple of races in the late 1980s.
But once she made it to the breeding barn it was a different story.
And as they say, the rest is history.
Frosty Again produced eight winners in her own right.
Frosty Bulldog was the most prolific winner of her progeny.
He won 12 times, reaching country cup class, and taking out the 2003 St Arnaud Cup.
Krause says the best of her crop was Frosty Lady.
She won a Vicbred Super Series three-year-old fillies’ final and finished third in the South Australian Oaks.
That is on the track, anyway. When it comes to continuing the family line, the top billing is shared by Jolaura and Forsty Mattina.
Jolaura has left four winners, including the well performed Lewisienna Jo (eight wins) and Amajorjo (12 wins).
Right now though, Krause has the softest spot for Frosty Mattina.
She did not get the racetrack, but significantly she is the mother of open class Abettorpunt – clearly the best pacer Krause has been associated with.
Abettorpunt, which is trained by David Lewis at Hamilton, has already given Krause and the Lewis family plenty of thrills, winning 21 of 53 starts for more than $300,000 in stakes.
And they are confident the best is yet come for the six-year-old – hopefully beginning with a win in the group 1 $175,000 PETstock Ballarat Pacing Cup, 2710m, tomorrow night.
Abettorpunt will be Krause’s first starter in a Ballarat Pacing Cup and he cannot wait for a chance at winning his hometown cup, which will be Abettorpunt’s biggest challenge since graduating into top company.
Krause has no doubt Abettorpunt is good enough to win a group 1, but also realises just how tough winning this event will be.
He believes it is as good as any Ballarat Pacing Cup field he can remember, and there have been some great ones over the years.
“I think they’ll run a track record,” he said.
Krause believes Abettorpunt has a barrier to suit – on the inside of the second row behind odds-on favourite The Gold Ace, which is expected to lead.
“He hasn’t had much luck in barrier draws. He has to do it tough all the time,” Krause said. “I know it’s just the luck of the draw, but it can be frustrating.”
He said hopefully the pace would be on and Abettorpunt gets an easy run behind the leader.
“Then hopefully we can get a run. He has the ability to sprint with the best of them,” he said.
Krause said Abettorpunt had shown ability from the outset.
“We knew we had a good horse from day one. He won his first start at Terang. He led and came home in quick time.”
Abettorpunt had just five starts as a two-year-old, winning an Australasian Breeders Crown semi-final and finishing fourth to Royal Verdict in the final.
He won a string of races as a three-year-old, including a Victoria Derby heat and a second placing to Sushi Sushi in the ABC final.
The son of Bettors Delight has raced against the best since moving into open age, but so far a big feature has eluded him.
His lead-up to the cup typifies his past few seasons, with a win in the Casey Classic at Melton on Victoria Cup night after minor placings in three group events during the Miracle Mile Carnival in NSW.
Abettorpunt’s latest two unplaced runs in the Horsham and South Australian Cups underline how tough it is in this class.
Tomorrow night will be no exception.