Team Alfeld enjoys “Majestic Sunday”

by Mike Love

A winner on debut, Majestic Sunday gave Leeston trainer Murray Alfeld the perfect start to 2024 by taking out the Banks Peninsula Welcome Dave Butts – Raceday Secretary Trot at Motukarara on Sunday.

“I’m really happy,” said Alfeld, “he went big. He was well back and I thought he might get third or fourth but he’s just jogged it.”

Majestic Sunday began well for driver Colin DeFilippi, and settled three and four back the fence. DeFilippi waited patiently for a gap to present itself up the long Banks Peninsula straight, going on to win stylishly by one and three quarter lengths from runner-up Tilthesunsets.

“Colin had a big smile on his face. We’ve had a good association over the years. Colin still sends some horses my way to break in or jog up. He’s a true professional.”

It was Alfeld’s first training success since Aldebaran Floss, also driven by DeFilippi, won the Group 2 New Zealand Trotting Oaks at Addington in 2021.

Alfred came across Majestic Sunday, a five-year-old Majestic Son gelding, when breeder Mike McGuire was looking to downsize.

“I had a drive on a couple about eight months ago. We just bowled around and he (Majestic Sunday) went about 3:40 (2400m) and i didn’t mind him. So I took him.”

Majestic Sunday had numerous workouts before qualifying at Methven in September.

“It’s a really neat family he’s from.”

Majestic Sunday is out of Pretty Sunday, daughter of Sun Mist, the mother of grand trotter Merinai.

“I do a lot of road work with them and potter around. I usually take all of mine to the workouts and trials until they go mistake free. If you take a young trotter to the races and they learn to gallop it takes a lot to get it out of them. He’s had a good foundation.”

Alfred trains a small team from his Leeston base, including a brother to Aldebaran Floss named Aldebaran Redwood who has just turned three.

“I do quite like him. He’s just having a spell at the moment. Plus I brought a few off gavelhouse including a broodmare with a foal at foot from the Weststar Milly family. I’ve got a two-year-old that trots around quite nicely too.”

Alfeld to date has trained 68 winners and won over $570,000 in stakes.