Great Things on hold until next term
Gavin Smith is remaining upbeat about his top trotter Great Things Happen, despite season-ending leg injuries in the horse being discovered early this week.
"The vet says it could be a good thing. He thinks he could come back better," Gavin said.
A fractured fetlock and cracked splint-bone were discovered during x-rays taken at the start of the week, ruling him out of Friday's Blue Star Taxis Summer Trotting Free-For-All at Addington.
Gavin says the splint has probably been troubling him for some time as he has appeared slightly sore for some time.
"No doubt soreness has played a part in his gait but he's been like that since he was a two-year-old."
"He might go from being 80 percent in his gait to 95 percent so I think it could be a good thing."
Gavin had given thoughts of retiring the seven-year-old at the end of the season if the horse was battling with his problems.
"He'll always be my first Group One winner so as long as Ted Edwards (co-owner with Gavin) doesn't want him, I'd like to keep him as a hack round the place when his racing days are over."
But Gavin is now more optimistic about the horse's long-term future after the diagnosis.
"We were lucky Bob (Butt, caretaker trainer) got him x-rayed.
"It sounds like the fetlock will have to be screwed, but I haven't discussed it fully with the vet as yet."
Great Things Happen has only raced 38 times for 16 wins, six seconds and three thirds, earning $229,275.
He is a co-NZ record-holder for the mobile 1950m trip at Addington with Monbet at 2:21.7, set when rating 1:56.9 in the Group One 2017 NZ Trotting Free-For-All at Addington.
Unfortunately, he was found to have picked up a bug after disappointing in November's Dominion Handicap, but despite his leg niggles, he bounced back to win his last two Addington starts, on January 25 and February 1.
"Those couple of wins will pay for the operation, but the horse doesn't owe us anything," Gavin said.
The big Love You-Calamity Gal gelding raced seven times this season, for three wins and two seconds.