By Dave Di Somma, Harness News Desk
It was a cold drizzly and dreary day in North Canterbury, but for Laura McKay there was no place she’d rather be. The 26 year old was “on debut” as a trainer at the midweek Rangiora work-outs.
“The first time in my colours and the first horse under my training so it’s a pretty exciting day for me.”
Her first project is five-year-old mare Faith No More (8-0).
“I bought her a month ago off Michael Cations….. she’s a maiden and not won a race so hopefully I can go and get her first win and my first win as a trainer.
“I have trained another trotter when I was at Mark Jones’ but it was never under my name.”
To use a Faith No More song title, the transition from driver to trainer isn’t “Easy” – “It’s kinda stressful, I overthink everything, what gear should I put on her, am I doing this right?”
Since 2016 she’s had 332 drives for 14 wins, two of them this year when partnered with the talented Team Kiwi. She needs one more win to be able to drive on premier nights.
“I like driving but enjoy training more, I have one year left in juniors so now is a good time to step into training.”
McKay’s introduction to racing came through her grandparents, high profile owners Rona and Clive McKay, who raced such good horses as Franco Nelson (18 wins – 65 starts) and 10-win trotter Holdonmyheart.
She then had stints at Jones’, Cran Dalgety’s and other stables, all the while hoping that one day she will make a success of it herself. That day has now arrived.
“It’s pretty cool …. hopefully this is the beginning”