Aaron Sims left frustrated as Simsfield Hardtimes misses out on record
Aaron Sims must be wondering what on earth is it going to take to clear the final hurdle and break the overall harness racing track record after again falling just shy of the mark.
Sims’s Indiana-bred gelding, Simsfield Hardtimes, posted a blistering 1:01/2 on the way to victory over rival Double Time in his opening heat at the National Equestrian Centre on Sunday.
The time was just one fifth of a second shy of the overall track record held by retired mare Google Me and equalled Simsfield Hardtimes’s personal best
“It’s getting exhausting as this is the fourth time we have knocked on the door, tied the gelding record and his lifetime mark,” Sims said. “But I am just pleased he is winning races and doing good.
“He’s strong and I think him and Kirista [driver Kirista Rabain] are a good match and obviously I do the training and the homework.
“He’s ready to roll and we just need that bit extra to break the record. I definitely feel he’s capable of doing it but everything has to be right.”
Simsfield Hardtimes achieved the time running on the rail in the Free For All division boasting the island’s fastest racing ponies.
Mello Family’s War Machine posted the second-fastest time of 1:02/1 with driver Darico Clarke and Martins family’s mare Double Time the third-fastest in 1:02/2 with driver/trainer Candyce Martins.
Double Time’s effort was the third fastest overall this season and a fifth of a second shy of the Bermuda-bred mare’s record of 1:02/1 achieved last season.
Two ponies advanced from their respective time bars after getting both legs out.
Martins Family’s stallion, Reel Desire, who posted a new lifetime mark of 1:08/2 with driver/trainer Candyce Martins at the helm to advance from the 1:10 and Slower division.
“He’s only three years old so he has not raced much and I don’t plan to push him,” Martins said. “I am just letting him run his race and see what he can do.
“I just want to see what he has in him and every week he seems to be getting better.”
Also on the move was Callum Cunningham’s gelding, Wiggleitjiggleit, that ran a 1:05/3 with driver/trainer Andrea Westerfield in the bike to advance from the 1:05/4-1:07/4 division.
“Again very happy with Kyle’s (Wiggleitjiggleit) performance,” Westerfield said. “The second race I asked him to move and he just went.”
The time exceeded the experienced driver’s expectations.
“I did not expect it to be that fast where we would get another leg out of the time bar,” Westerfield added.