SA TROTS -All set for a massive Italian Cup Night

WHEN the moon hits your eye like a big pizza-pie that’s…probably the result of Corey Johnson tripping over at Globe Derby on Saturday night.

With the Italian Cup headlining the program, Harness Racing SA has organised a cultural-associated festival, complete with fine dining and activities.

Tickets are selling fast for the function, with more than 400 people booked into the newly-rejuvenated Jubilee Room for a four-course ‘banchetto’ courtesy of Tony Vizaniaris.

Live Music from Fourtune X, Fashions on The Field, the Australian Muscle Car Club of SA and double-seater sulky rides will keep patrons entertained throughout the evening.

On the track, excitement machine Jawsoflincoln will take another step towards establishing himself as the state’s premier pacer in the Cup.

Last season’s top three-year-old, Jawsoflincoln was impressive when winning his open class debut last weekend in what was his first run for eight weeks.

Sticking with Cups, last year’s Trotters’ Cup King – C K Spur – faces a daunting task from a 60-metre handicap in the Fred Jones Cup.

As for Johnson, he’s set to hit the track in the inaugural Pizza Box Relay Race, which will see teams of four dash 200 metres up the home straight carrying a pizza.

The first runner will carry one pizza for the initial 50-metre ‘slice’, with the last team member to cross the finish with a stack of four pizzas.

Johnson’s delivery boys consist of Nic Brown, Jason Kittel and Phillip Nicol.

“If eating pizzas counts, I’ve done a bit of training for this,” Johnson said. “We haven’t worked out the delivery order, but you usually put the two strongest runners first and last, which probably puts me on the bench!

“It’s a bit of fun and hopefully we can get a slice of the winners’ serve at the end.”

HRSA Chief executive Dean Elliott has praised the work behind the scenes to create the evening, which hopes will develop into an annual event.

“It’s not every week in SA we head to the races with a 400-person function to look forward to,” Elliott said.

“Recapturing the imagination of racegoers and engaging with our audience is high on the ‘to-do’ list and nights like this edge us closer to that vision.

“I must thank the tireless volunteer work that has gone into the Italian Cup function, headed up by SA BOTRA President Lee-Ann Pangrazio, whose efforts behind the scenes have been nothing short of extraordinary.

“Lee-Ann has been assisted by too many people to mention from BOTRA, the SAHRC and HRSA, whose dedication to harness racing is quite touching or should I say ‘bellissimo’.”

HRSA Media Room