Frith a mother-to-be as trainer eyes Australasian Breeders Crown

NSW horse of the year Frith is set to have her first foal later in the year after the owners used embryo transfer to continue the family line.

Trainer Bruce Harpley decided to give the six-time group 1 winner a quiet year after her remarkable classic season, where she won 15 of her 16 starts, and it was the perfect opportunity to use the technique, allowed under the rules of harness racing.

"We did a lot of research into it and it seems to be all right and it was worth a go with a mare as good her," Harpley said. "So we got her in foal to Mach Three and did the transfer, so she had to have a few months off, which we were always planning.

"So another mare will carry her foal and it is due in the next couple of months. We get the best of both worlds. We get to see Frith race, we get her foal and we will find out how she goes as a broodmare."

Frith has had seven starts this season for four wins, including the four-year-olds' Breeders Challenge Final and Jane Ellen at Melton on Friday night.

"The two- and three-year-old years are so tough on these sort of horse, so we wanted to give her time to mature and grow this season," Harpley said. "She didn't need to be racing and hopefully it will help her when she has to take on the best horses later in the year."

Harpley is mulling over whether to give Frith another start before next month's Australasian Breeders Crown. "We have always looked at that race and then we will give her a short break before looking at the good mares races and better races," Harpley said.

"We are probably not going to do another [embryo] transfer this year because we want her to have her chance to race in November."

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