The Albany Harness Racing Club reinsperson of the year award is going to the wire after Aaron Beckett drew level with Donald Harper following Friday night’s meet at Harold Reid Paceway.
Beckett drove four winners on February 1 at the same venue and he was again in great touch in the nine-race card on Friday, chalking up a winning treble.
Those three winners shot Beckett to the top of the drivers’ standings, where he shares the equal lead now with Harper heading into the final three meetings of the 2018-19 season.
Beckett trailed Harper by three points heading into Friday but he wasted little time, winning race 2 on short-priced favourite Smart Fortune.
Trained by Barry Howlett, with whom Beckett has formed a winning partnership, Smart Fortune was then followed by stablemate Another Mouse, scoring back-to-back Albany wins after claiming the L.V. Dohnt Social Club Pace (2683m) by 3.5m.
Beckett and Howlett rounded out the treble in the final event when Rock Dance broke his maiden status in start No.5. The treble moved Beckett to 56 points and he has had 11 winners in Albany this season.
Harper collected nine points on Friday to also land on 56 points in total for the season so far, but he has one less win than his main rival.
Highview Sadler came from the second row to win for Harper and trainer Peter Anderson in race 4 before Harper also tasted success on the Anderson-prepared Marilyn Said.
Emily Suvaljko sits in third place with 40 points to her name and Tim Stone (30 points) is next with three meetings left.