Aussie News - Dec 12
By Adam Hamilton
Aussie star Rock N Roll Doo is already being set for another New Zealand raid.
Trainer-driver Mick Stanley said The Race at Cambridge was a major target.
Rock N Roll Doo only had a brief break after his frustrating NZ Cup raid and will return to racing in next Saturday night’s Cranbourne Cup.
“We skipped the Inter Dominion because there are so many big races for him after Christmas,” Stanley said. “He’s got the Hunter Cup, up to Sydney for the Miracle Mile and then we’ll head back to NZ for The Race.
“He wouldn’t really handle Gloucester Park and it’s easier to get to Auckland, so that’s the slot race we’re targeting.
“He’s back now so we can get a good foundation of staying races into him before the Hunter Cup.
“After Cranbourne it’s the Bendigo Cup in early January, the Ballarat Cup a couple of weeks later and then Hunter Cup two weeks after that.”
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Dual NZ Cup winner Copy That will be among Rock N Roll Doo’s rivals in two upcoming Victorian features.
Fresh off his stunning Alexandra Park win last Friday, owner Merv Butterworth confirmed another Victorian raid was on the cards.
“There’s another couple of races here for him, then he’ll head over for the Ballarat and Hunter Cups,” he said.
“There’s not much for him around that time and those races will really suit him.
“He won’t go to the Miracle Mile. He’ll go back home after the Hunter Cup and get ready for The Race.”
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There was plenty of talk WA’s best pacer Magnificent Storm should have tackled the Inter Dominion.
But his connections have happily stayed home and look to have a string of majors at their mercy.
The brilliant five-year-old showed another weapon – explosive gate speed – when he blasted out from gate five to lead and effectively “win” the $50,000 Group 2 Village Kid Sprint (1730m) in the first 100m last Friday night.
“He’s actually getting better and better, this horse,” managing owner Rob Tomlinson said.
“We thought he was a bit vulnerable tonight after a short break, but it was over pretty quickly once he found the front.”
The former Kiwi son of American Ideal steadied through a 30.3sec second split, then dashed home in 55.8 and 27.7sec to win as he liked by 4.5m over Hampton Banner, who trailed, and a brave Diego, who made an early move to sit parked.
Other class runners chased them home with Lavra Joe (fourth), Patronus Star (fifth) and emerging former Kiwi pacer Prince Of Pleasure (sixth).
“We brought him back for this because it’s all about getting a strong grounding into him for the Fremantle Cup early next month,” Tomlinson said. “It’s clear now he thrives on racing. When we’ve backed him up a few weeks in a row, that’s when he’s gone best.”
Magnificent Storm is a clear prepost favourite for the Fremantle and WA Cups and is also top seed for the new slot race, the $1 million Nullarbor, at Gloucester Park on April 14.
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The might of the Yabby Dams operation was on full display at last Friday night’s feature trotting meeting at Bendigo.
Yabby Dams and head trainer Anton Golino won both three-year-old trotting features with speedy Village Mystic filly Courmayeur and exciting Orlando Vici gelding Cravache Dor.
Despite sitting parked, Cravache Dor raced clear to win in a slick 1min55.6sec mile.
Golino explained why they didn’t have runners in the two two-year-old trotting features on the night.
“We got behind with the two-year-olds and just decided not to push them and try to race them this year,” he said.
The two-year-old races were won by Wayne Potter’s exciting Muscle Mass colt The Locomotive and David Miles’ Aldebaran Eagle filly Rockinwithattitude.
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Champion trainer Emma Stewart still had reason to smile after having to settle for third and fourth as the best placings of her four Inter Dominion pacing finalists on Saturday night.
Favourite and leader Act Now was nabbed late to finish third, while Honolua Bay didn’t quite run out a strong 2760m and finished fourth from a one-one trail.
But, earlier in the night, Stewart produced former star juvenile Major Moth for his comeback run after 12 months sidelined by injury.
And the four-year-old was stunning. He led, took a trail on stablemate Idyllic, and blasted home in 53.9sec for his own last half to win by 2.6m.
Major Moth now heads straight to the heats of the Vicbred series on Friday and will be a major player in the Group 1 final on New Year’s Eve.
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Former New Zealand Trotting Derby winner Lotamuscle grabbed another feature win at Melton.
Trained and driven by Matty Craven, Lotamuscle escaped a three pegs pocket to storm home and win running away in the Group 2 Sundons Gift Trotters’ Free-For-All, which was effectively the consolation of the Inter Dominion trotting final.
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Two old marvels combined for a memorable Menangle win.
Veteran trainer Harry Martin, best known through his deeds with Grand Circuit star Double Identity almost 20 years ago, produced his rising nine-year-old Double Encounter for a stunning win in the opening race.
Having his 199th start, Double Identity won by almost 17m and smashed her career PB with a 1min49.9sec mile.
It was his 27th win with another 53 placings and took his bankroll to $350,215.
He went much quicker time than the 1min51.2sec posted by the Paul Fitzpatrick-trained Jay OK ran winning the free-for-all in 1min51.2sec.
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Former Kiwi pacer Mach Da Vinci continued his fantastic Queensland form with an all-the-way win in the Lord Mayors Cup (2138m) at Albion Park.
The Art Major rising six-year-old has won three on end and now boasts 21 wins from his 78 starts and $340,477 in earnings.