Adam Sanderson   Harness Racing Trainer & Driver



Adams latest news items


Sanderson back in town

20 March 2014 - JAMIE SEARLE


Queensland reinsman Adam Sanderson is available for drives at the Ascot Park premier raceday on Sunday week.


He will be visiting family and friends during his week-long stay. Sanderson left the employ of Invercargill trainer Wayne Adams to work for Queensland horseman Darrel Graham, of Fernvale, 18 months ago.


The ex-Southlander nearly gained a drive in the Interdominion Final at Menangle on March 2 when he reined Sign To Inverell to second in the Queensland heat at Albion Park on February 15. Only the winner, Forever Gold, gained entry into the final.


Sanderson has driven the winners of 57 races since the Australian season started on September 1. His weekly racing schedule is usually driving 15 to 20 horses spread over four or five meetings.


Southland trainers wanting to book Sanderson for the Invercargill meeting should contact Jason Broad at Southern Harness Racing's office at Ascot Park.




Sanderson flying high in Queensland



Former Invercargill driver Adam Sanderson has won a Queensland Harness Racing Award.


He and Narissa McMullen were named winners of the Breeders, Owners and Trainers' Association's Rising Stars Award at a function in Brisbane this month. Last season's high achievers in Queensland harness racing were honoured.


Sanderson and McMullen received awards for outstanding effort and achievement as junior drivers. They drove 96 (McMullen) and 87 (Sanderson) winners last term and were sixth and seventh on the state's drivers' premiership.


Montana Marie gave Sanderson a career highlight when winning the Group II A$75,000 Seymour Nursery Pace Final at Albion Park in May.


''I drove her six times for six wins,'' Sanderson, 24, said yesterday.


He resumes race driving at Redcliffe tomorrow night after copping a two-week suspension for causing interference in a race at Albion Park on October 8.


One of the horses interfered with was driven by former Southlander Rob Gorman.


''I deserved it [the suspension],'' Sanderson said.


He lives at the Fernvale property of his boss, trainer-driver Darrel Graham. It's one hour by road from Albion Park.


Sanderson trains two horses, including The Ultimate Kina (three wins), who arrived from New South Wales last week. The gelding, raced by Ryal Bush owner-breeders Ben and Karen Calder, gained a win from 14 starts in New South Wales and earlier campaigned from the Southland stables of Nathan Williamson and Allan Beck.


Midnight Montana, the other horse trained by Sanderson, was bought by the licence holder last month.


''He's had three starts for me for a win and two placings. I bought him for $2000 and he's since won $6000.''


Sanderson was a successful junior driver in Southland before moving to Queensland 13 months ago.


''I'm loving it over here, but I will come back [to Southland] later on.''




From Maroon and Gold (Southland) to Green and Gold (Australia) Adam takes the opportunity to step up to another level in the Harness Racing Industry.


Southland's top junior driver for the 2011/12 season, Adam Sanderson has moved to Queensland to be Stable Foreman for Darrel Graham.


He had only recently returned to Invercargill after a working holiday over the winter in Darrel Graham's Fernvale stable when he was offered the stable foreman's job.


''What Darrel offered was too good to turn down,'' the 23-year-old said.


Adam, previously employed by Ascot Park trainer Wayne Adams, has driven 70 winners, including three in Queensland. Of those winners 40 were during the 2011/12 season which was the best he has had. This coincided with the top season for his employer Wayne Adams.


Adam’s final meeting in New Zealand was at Gore where he farewelled his Southland racing experience with a win behind Robs Ideal for trainer Ross Wilson.


''Ross has been a good supporter of mine,'' Sanderson said.


Adams new position at Graham's stable is about 50 minutes by road from Queensland's principal harness track, Albion Park, in Brisbane where he is training 23 horses.


''His track goes up a hill and down again.''


Graham's training programmes include a lot of galloping.


Adam drove three winners on his earlier trip, but was also had some communication in the stewards' room on a few occasions.


''They race four times a week (in Queensland) and there are more opportunities,'' Adam said.


The junior driver said he had learned a lot in Southland's harness racing industry and was now looking forward to new challenges in Australia.


Rural Web Design will continue to be associated with Adam in Australia and wishes him every success with his career future.



The Adman To Become The Ausman

Bruce Stewart - Southland Harness Racing


Promising junior driver Adam Sanderson is leaving Southland at the end of the month.


He was one of the rising stars in the Southland driving ranks but he’s been lured across the Tasman to work for Brisbane trainer Daryl Graham who has trained horses like Lanacost, Couragous Annie and Roll On Big Red.


“I go over every winter and help him. He rang me after his stable foreman Brett Cargill said he was leaving at the end of the season. His offer was too good to refuse.” said Sanderson.


Sanderson recorded forty wins in the current Southland season and represented the South Island in the junior drivers series recently held in Christchurch.


His driving fortunes were turned around after he joined forces with Invercargill trainer Wayne Adam to form a potent force on the local harness scene. He also drove regularly for Gore trainer Ross Wilson.


“Wayne gave me all the good drives and I was getting drives every week. He (Wayne) wasn’t happy when I told him I was leaving which I can understand. I’ve had such a great season which made making the decision even harder.”


Daryl Graham who is based in Brisbane is a regular buyer at the New Zealand Ready To Run sales where he purchased Courageous Annie for $150,000.


She won her first ten starts as a three year before her form became mixed as a four year old and she was recently retired after recording fifteen wins from just twenty seven starts and earning over $200,000.


“He doesn’t have a big team, with about 25 in work. I suppose he offered me the position because I know how the stable works. Daryl drives so I’ll be mainly driving the second ones. They use the young drivers over there when the horses drop back in class so I’ll probably be used there.”


The decision by Sanderson further diminishes the junior driver ranks in Southland with most of the races for juniors in the province having to use the Williamson brothers from Oamaru and Canterbury juniors.


“It’s worrying times down here. It’s not the trainers' fault. The stakes are poor so it’s hard to pay good money to stable hands and young drivers who want to get into the game when they leave school. Racing in New Zealand needs help.”


Sanderson leaves on the 24th August.



Rural Web Design and Slingsby Holdings Sponsorship


Rural Web Design and Slingsby Holdings have recently become the joint sponsors of Adam and are pleased to be supporting a very good up and coming young harness racing driver.


Slingsby Holdings is a dairy farming business.


Rural Web Design ( is a web design business that although covers most types of business websites is more particularly involved in designing racing trainers/drivers/owners/breeders/preparers sites, agricultural business sites, stud animals and any other farming (contractors etc.) type websites.


As a sponsor of Adam, Rural Web Design is like any other trainer or owner that are keen to see young drivers coming through the ranks and showing commitment to the Harness Racing Industry. I believe Adam is a very capable driver and is caring of any horse he drives. By striking up a driving relationship with Adam also has the advantage of if you send horses to race south then you could already have a suitable driver available. (Providing Adam is not committed to a drive for his current Southland clients).

For my part – I do some website design from home and run my business under the name Rural Web Design – I am backing Adam by offering Trainers/Owners/Breeders who use his services as a driver a 10-20% discount on the design and maintenance of their website if he drives for you between 10 and 12 times in a year. For smaller trainers I will give a discount as per starters for which Adam is your driver i.e. 10% - for 10% of the starters that Adam drivers’, 20% for 20% etc. to a maximum of 50% discount. In dollars terms this would mean for you a website costing between $225 and $175 + GST and a domain name. (I do everything for you design, updates, additions all you have to do is email info to me – easy as that). For more details on my website design and what I can do to help your business check out my website:


Hope you are able to help. Adam is prepared to travel providing he gets 4 to 5 drives per meeting, or a group or listed drive.

For more details on Adam check out his website:



Winter Cup To Donthavetime (Sunday 20th May 2012)

Bruce Stewart - Southland Harness Racing


It's been a great season for Findlay Road trainer Wayne Adams and stable reinsman Adam Sanderson with both recording personal bests.


This season Adams has had the fire power and the services of a talented junior reinsman in Sanderson.

With a couple of months still left in the 2011-2012 season Adams currently sits on nineteen wins - two more than the seventeen he recorded in the 2008 season, while Sanderson has driven thirty seven winners and is currently Southlands leading reinsman.


There's no doubting that Mach Three mare Donthavtime has been part of their success this season and winning the $10,000. 3200 metre Winter Cup was just reward for Adams, Sanderson and owner Murray Little.

"She's a nice mare who's done a great job for us this season and everything went to plan today which is all you can ask for. She's got a good turn of foot, good from the gate and from the stand. The pull down blinds have been very successful for her too. She seems to find another gear when you pull them," said Adams.


Driver Adam Sanderson placed Donthavetime in the trail behind leader Lake View. Turning for home Sanderson took the passing lane and the mare sprinted nicely to beat a late charging Flash Of Fire by a length and three quarters. The winning time was a respectable 4-06.4 - a new race record for the 3200 metre. The Winter Cup was first run in 1994 and for the first seven years was over 3200 metres. From 2001 to 2011 it was contested for over 2700 metres. Yesterday's win was Donthavetime's sixth. "I had no doubts she'd run the two miles. She ran ninth in the Wyndham Cup and she came from the back so I knew the distance wouldn't worry her."


Adams says the season is coming to an end for the mare but she's likely to run at the last two Southland meetings.


"We'll look at Winton and then perhaps Invercargill in a fortnights time then she'll go out in the paddock. I don't know if she'll keep improving although she did improve from being a bit of a rogue as a three year old into a nice four year old. She's getting up into that tough grade now so it's a bit hard."

Adam Sanderson and Donthavtime - photo Bruce Stewart