August 13, 2021 National Trotguide
Following as hat-trick of solid placings at Headquarters, ZIGGY ROCKS (2) will take a power of beating when he faces the starter from gate two. Prepared by KerryAnn Turner and to be driven by her husband Robbie, the son of Pet Rock commenced his run of minor cheques with a solid 3rd to the multiple feature winner Tasty Delight before coming from a four-peg role in posting a 5.8m 2nd to Rays Choice. Commencing his latest challenge from gate seven, Ziggy Rocks was left exposed outside of the leader, but that didn’t prevent him from ‘digging deep’ when a gritty 3.7m 2nd to Pump The Brakes. From his improved draw the 5yo is likely to receive a kinder run, and against similar opposition that should assist his claims of recording a deserving win. MIGHTY FLYING ART (10) has drawn gate 10, the same role he had a couple of weeks ago when he crossed the face of the field in dictating the terms. Attempting to complete a hat-trick of winning displays, the Jack Trainor-trained son of Art Major was unable to complete the task, but he certainly wasn’t disgraced in the G3 Winter Championship, with a respectable 4.7m 4th to stablemate Never Been Said coming his way. In what appears to be an open and competitive contest, Mighty Flying Art will again make his presence felt. RAYS CHOICE (4) won a similar race three starts back when he accounted for Ziggy Rocks and Our Madiba. Leading the race to the pegs, then occupying a stalking role, the 8yo finished the race off strongly. The Jason Grimson-trained son of Four Starzzz Shark stepped up in grade when a solid 3rd to Double Encounter and Burnham Boy, prior to posting a 13.7m 8th to Rocknroll Angel and Burnham Boy a week ago. From his ideal starting role, Rays Choice will be in this race for a long way. PUMP THE BRAKES (6) was having his second run back from a spell in proving too good for Ziggy Rocks and Hickstead last week, courtesy of enjoying the one-one from the outset. Prepared and driven by Sean Grayling the 7yo, despite being confronted by a harder task, will give another good account. The Joe Conolly-trained GOLDEN YEAR (3) has been freshened since facing the breeze when a useful 11m 6th to The Stunning Nun back on July 3. The Art Major 6yo will appreciate gate three and a role in the exotics should be considered. ALWAYS ROCKIN (8) also has claims in that regard after a solid 2nd behind Majestic Cruiser a week ago.
ZIGGY ROCKS 1, Mighty Flying Art 2, Rays Choice 3, Pump The Brakes 4.
Former Kiwi MIGHTY LOOEE (1) makes plenty of appeal after a pleasing debut performance for the Belinda McCarthy stable a week ago. Contesting his first assignment since mid-June, the son of Sweet Lou drew out in gate eight, which resulted in Jack Callaghan restraining the 4yo, with the pair competing from a role, three back in the running line. Although never a serious threat over the final stages, Mighty Looee did work home nicely in posting a 7m 6th to the long-shot Petes Said So. With the benefit of that run and a sound trial leading into that contest, Mighty Looee will take a higher level of fitness into this assignment and, with an ideal draw being another important factor, the gelding appeals as a suitable gamble. METAL ROCK (6) looms as the main threat after a solid effort last week when first-up for the Jason Grimson team. With ‘star’ reinsman Cam Hart in the sulky, the 5yo posted a 1.6m 3rd to Petes Said So after enjoying the one-one throughout. The son of Pet Rock has again drawn handily in the middle of the line and he is likely to again be in the mix from the outset. Outside of the two main players the race starts to take on an open appearance. Courtesy of drawing gate two GOTTASHOPEARLY (2) has done enough in recent starts to warrant attention as an exotic runner. Contesting the same race as the top two picks last week, the 8yo worked home stoutly from a five-peg role in recording a handy 5.7m 5th to his stablemate. The consistent TOP THE ACE (4) backed up wins at Penrith and Menangle, respectively, with a solid 3m 3rd to Schouten Island and Lets Go To Brazil a couple of weeks ago. With a better draw awaiting the 8yo, expect another competitive effort from the son of Aces N Sevens. There are a host of chances for the exotics, with last-start winner SOHO TSUNAMI (7), BRONSKI BELLE (8), DEE DOUBLE YOU (9), HE BETTOR STEP ASIDE (10) and BANKERS GOLD (11) all worthy of involvement in transactions.
MIGHTY LOOEE 1, Metal Rock 2, Gottashopearly 3, Top The Ace 4.
Hopefully, the classy BURNHAM BOY (7) won’t settle for being ‘second best’ again as the Kevin Pizzuto-trained gelding looks to break a frustrating run of placings. Since resuming from a spell Burnham Boy has contested seven races, with six placings coming his way, four as runner-up. After finding Double Encounter a shade too good on two occasions, Burnham Boy then drew gate 10 last week, which resulted in the 4yo working across the main body of the field in taking up the role outside of the leader, The Black Prince. Despite a blistering 26.5 final quarter, Burnham Boy, as per usual, kept grinding away which resulted in a brave head 2nd to Rocknroll Angel, with the mare converting a far kinder, stalking role, into a stylish win due to a brilliant Cam Hart drive. Burnham Boy, less the reserve, will launch his claim from gate six and that will at least give him the chance to enjoy a kinder run. Such a role will again see him as the one to beat. Victorian mentor David Aiken has strengthened his northern invasion with MALCOMS RHYTHM (5) making the trip up the highway. Since collecting the 11th win of his career at Echuca back on March 19, the son of Art Major hasn’t finished further back then fourth in his subsequent eight engagements, half resulting in placings and, always against quality opposition. The 5yo entire is coming off a tough 9.3m 4th to Vandanta at Melton a couple of weeks ago when little went right from a 2nd row draw. A three deep mid race move resulted in Malcolms Rhythm being trapped for the trip home and with solid 29.4 and less quarters being posted; the bay did a good job in finishing as close as he did. Reserve out and Malcolms Rhythm will occupy a suitable starting role, and he is more than capable of giving this contest a big shake. Had THE BLACK PRINCE (11) drawn suitably, the Roy Roots Jnr-trained son of Bettors Delight would be the top pick, however, the outside gate will hinder his claims. Contesting his first race since an outstanding 4th to King Of Swing in the Miracle Mile, The Black Prince posted a pleasing 8m 7th to Cash N Flow, prior to his latest effort a week ago when he commenced the 1609m assignment from the prized pole position. With Robert Morris dictating the terms to perfection, The Black Prince was in full flight up the Menangle straight, however, he was unable to fend of the late surge by Rocknroll Angel and a gritty effort by Burnham Boy in posting a 2.8m third. The Black Prince will strip fitter, which is a big plus, but the pathway to success this time around will likely come from a role back in the pack. Veteran mentor Harry Martin has DOUBLE ENCOUNTER (10) racing in a ‘purple patch’ of form and although a wide gate will greet the son of Village Jasper another competitive showing is bound to unfold. Following back-to-back wins over Burnham Boy, the 7yo worked home stoutly in recording a 6m 5th to Rocknroll Angel last week. The draw may result in Glenn McElhinney avoiding the early ‘hustle and bustle’, with the preference being a kind run back in the pack before launching in the run home. MAX DELIGHT (9) posted encouraging efforts in finishing 3rd to Pocket Of Terror and Cash N Flow, respectively, but has been safely held in two subsequent appearances. Contesting a similar assignment last week and from a deep draw, Max Delight was never a factor in posting a 14.4m 9th to Rocknroll Angel. The former NSW Derby winner is better than that and he should at least be given another chance when it comes to multiple combinations. HIDDEN COURAGE (6) and PITCH PERFECT (2) also have claims in that regard.
BURNHAM BOY 1, Malcolms Rhythm 2, The Black Prince 3, Double Encounter 4.
Despite the presence of another wide gate, OUR MADIBA (9) is worth the gamble in a race of many chances. After overcoming a wide gate in scoring at Headquarters six starts ago, the Jack Trainor-prepared 7yo has continued to be a factor. Placed in three of his past five, Our Madiba has also been in the mix in his other two occasions, finishing fourth each time. Such was the case a couple of weeks ago when the son of Bettors Delight had little luck from his wide gate. Drifting back in the field, Our Madiba entered the straight back in a five-peg role, and after finding difficulty in securing a suitable run, crossed the line 10.2m from the winner, Glengarry Rose. Trainor will likely adopt similar tactics in allowing Our Madiba to miss the early charge for positions in the hope of having better luck in finding ‘clear air’ when things get serious. Although SWAGGIE SHANNON (1) is finding it hard to greet the judge in recent months, it is hard to ignore him as a threat after coming up with gate one. The Cameron Ross-trained son of Kenneth J, in fairness, hasn’t had a lot of luck in some of his recent efforts and that has been a factor in a defeat or two. However, the veteran did have every chance after drawing gate one last week, which allowed him to enjoy a kind run behind the leader. The end result was a determined 2.2m 3rd to the in-form, Cloud Nine. Swaggie Shannon can expect a similar role in transit and a trip to the winner’s circle isn’t beyond him. WOW HE A ROCK STAR (4) had little luck from a four-peg role last week when a closing 3.2m 4th to Petes Said So. That was a step up in grade on his previous solid form, which included an all-the-way win over Watchmedazzle and Dragon Tattoo a week earlier. Prepared by Blake Fitzpatrick, Wow Hes A Rock Star is capable of being in the mix from the outset so expect a bold showing. ARDENS ACE (11) made it back-to-back wins at Headquarters when he finished strongly in defeating Stick Man and Watchmedazzle on Tuesday. The Darren Binskin trained and driven son of Art Major will be confronted by a harder challenge, mainly due to the outside gate, but don’t ignore him as a contender. When it comes to the exotics a fitter EXPERIA (10) is capable of being in the mix, along with OUR MONEY ROCKS (7) and GLENGARRY ROSE (8).
OUR MADIBA 1, Swaggie Shannon 2, Wow Hes A Rock Star 3, Ardens Ace 4.
Cameron Ross has been enjoying a fair amount of success of late with his small team, with the headline act being MACHS LEGACY (2), which is poised to greet the judge for the third time in her past five trips to the races. The pair enjoyed immediate success when Machs Legacy scored a strong win at Penrith, then proving that win wasn’t a ‘fluke’ when the filly defeated a couple of talented types in Chrissy Chic and Titian Raider. Contesting a tougher challenge, as she attempted to complete the hat-trick, Machs Legacy settled five pegs before being in a midfield role in the running line as heads were turned for home. With the final 400m covered in a slick 26.8, the daughter of Mach Three continued to find the line with intent, resulting in a respectable 4.8m 4th to Titian Raider and Tasty Delight. Back in grade for her latest encounter, Machs Legacy drew out in seven, resulting in a role back in the pack coming her way. Hitting the line with conviction over the final stages, Machs Legacy recorded a solid metre 2nd to Ardens Ace, which won again on Tuesday. The move back to an ideal starting role should be enough to see Machs Legacy playing an active role in the finish. Despite drawing out in gate eight, a fitter WATTLEBANK LASS (8) appeals as a contender for the major share of the prizemoney. Runner-up in each of her opening two starts this preparation, both on her home track of Bathurst, the Amanda Turnbull trained and driven mare was responsible for a creditable effort in defeat a week ago. Beaten for early speed in settling three back in the running line, although effectively without cover at the 800m, Wattlebank Lass moved closer in keeping the leader company on the home turn. Battling on stoutly over the final stages, the mare posted a handy 11.6m 4th to Uroc Skinny Jeans. Better luck in running will result in Wattlebank Lass being involved in the finish. Although costly when last produced, POCKET BOOK (3) warrants further attention as she faces the starter for her initial Menangle assignment. Now under the care of Jason Grimson the former Kiwi mare posted a tough win at Penrith on July 22 when first-up for the stable, then again worked when a costly 5.5m 3rd to Black Edition at the same venue. Pocket Book will strip fitter for those two runs and the good draw will see her being competitive from the outset. Apart from Machs Legacy, Cameron Ross will also be represented by CHERISHTHEMEMORIES (4), which had been in fine form before being unplaced in her past two outings. The first of those two efforts could be overlooked as the sparingly-raced daughter of Sportswriter posted a creditable 7.4m 5th to Titian Raider and Tasty Delight. The filly then started favourite for her next outing at Penrith and after having little luck in running, posted a 7.3m 5th to Sadhana. When it comes to forming exotics combinations, Cherishthememories is worthy of attention. MARIKA SPRINGFIELD (5) is up in grade on her last-start Penrith win, but don’t write her off as an exotic player.
MACHS LEGACY 1, Wattlebank Lass 2, Pocket Book 3, Cherishthememories 4.
Classy mare ROCKNROLL ANGEL (8) looks to have this race at her mercy as she returns to competing against her own sex. The Jason Grimson-trained daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven, courtesy of a brilliant drive by Cam Hart, powered to the line in defeating Burnham Boy and The Black Prince in a G3 challenge a week ago, which was her first outing in nearly a month. This time around the 8yo strikes an intriguing mares’ event, and although the outside gate awaits, Rocknroll angel will only be confronted by six rivals. Versatile in her racing pattern, Rocknroll Angel has the speed to stamp her authority on this race from the outset in crossing and taking up the role as dictator. And that would appear to be the most likely role. NEVER BEEN SAID (7) looms as the main threat to Rocknroll Angel if there is to be such a thing. The daughter of Well said has thrived since coming under the care of Jack Trainor and, as a result, the pair have combined for three wins and the same number of placings from eight starts. A rare unplaced effort was recorded just a week ago when the mare posted a grinding 8.5m 4th to Majestic Cruiser. Game in defeat, Never Been said will welcome the return to a contest against her own sex. QUEENOFDANCE (2) didn’t have a great deal of luck last week in finishing an 11.5m 3rd to Uroc Skinny Jeans. Snookered three pegs and held up for a suitable run, the former Kiwi mare did a good job and from gate two, a similar kind run is likely to come her, which will be required in this tougher test. Cameron Ross will have UROC SKINNY JEANS (4) representing his stable and on the strength of her past two wins, the daughter Mach Three is capable of another cheeky display. Prior to joining Ross, Uroc Skinny Jeans scored by a huge margin at Albury, prior to stepping out at Menangle last week. Leading from start to finish, Uroc Skinny Jeans scored with authority in defeating Sadhana and Queenofdance. This will be by far her toughest test, but she is entitled to be linked to the major players in exotic investments. Both MYRA DAWN (5) and POWER SURGE (6) could throw some value into the multiples.
ROCKNROLL ANGEL 1, Never Been Said 2, Queenofdance 3, Uroc Skinny Jeans 4.
Despite an imposing 40m hcp, champion trotter TOUGH MONARCH (11) is poised to post his 20th Menangle win from just 41 starts. Boasting 28 wins from his 83 engagements, the 9yo continues to creep towards breaking the $500,000 in prizemoney. Resuming from a spell with back-to-back wins at Menangle, both under mobile conditions, the Rickie Alchin-trained son of Monarchy then ventured north to tackle the Queensland Trotting Cup on July 24. A second-row draw, plus a three wide trip which resulted in the role outside of the leader coming his way, wasn’t enough to prevent Tough Monarch from greeting the judge, leaving Humble Ladd and Pink Galahs to fill the minor roles. With Rickie remaining in Queensland to look after his in-form team, brother Jarrod will occupy the role in the sulky. From his 16 starts under these conditions, Tough Monarch has collected four wins and five placings so the tape start won’t be a concern. While Tough Monarch will be giving the majority of nine rivals a big start when the strands are released, his main rivals will receive just 10m. The Darren Hancock trained and driven DROP THE HAMMER (10) is one such runner which will step away from behind the 30m tape. After finishing 3rd to Tough Monarch in his opening two starts since a spell, the 6yo then greeted the judge in fine style before having every chance when a costly head 2nd to Caligula. With two wins and a second from four starts under these conditions, Drop The Hammer will give Tough Monarch a run for his money. BIG JACK HAMMER (9) will join Drop The Hammer behind the 30m tape and with a handy stand record, the David Aiken-trained 8yo can’t be taken lightly. However, he has been mixing his form of late and is coming off a 9m 5th to Drop The Hammer a few weeks ago. Safely held in a trial here on Wednesday, Big Jack Hammer remains in the multiple mix. MONARO MIA (8), which is also from the Hancock stable, has seven wins to show for her 23 outings from behind the tapes and with a useful 20m advantage of the back maker, the mare is capable of giving plenty of cheek. MAJOR THOMAS (3) and GALLEONS GLORY (6) are value chances which are worth including in the multiples.
TOUGH MONARCH 1, Drop The Hammer 2, Big Jack Hammer 3, Monaro Mia 4.
Hitting peak condition following three runs back from a break, HEAVENLY BELLE (1) has the ideal chance to place another ‘tick’ in the win column. Gradually improving with each run back, the filly did a good job last start in posting a 4.4m 3rd behind Ardens Ace, which won again on Tuesday, and Machs Legacy. Drawing out in six and settling midfield, Heavenly Belle hit the line in fine fashion. Apart from stripping fitter, the Peter Russo-trained daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven will also enjoy the benefit of facing the starter from gate one while also dropping back to a suitable challenge. That adds up to a recipe for success. DIVINE DIVA (9) has a tricky draw but the mare has the talent to again be competitive in this field. Following a win here three starts back, the Mach Three mare struck trouble when a 28m 7th to Cloud Nine, so forget that run, prior to working home stoutly in recording an 8m 4th to Spirit Of Anzac on Aug 3. Divine Diva is likely to settle off the pace once again and come with a rush. The battle for exotic roles will be keenly contested with HEHELLOFALASS (7), MUSTANG MILLY (6), YUKO (8) and OH DADDY (5) in the mix. THE LONGEST DAY (4), which finished a handy 6m 5th to Ardens Ace last week, has since trialled handily at Menangle on Wednesday so don’t leave him out of the mix.
HEAVENLY BELLE 1, Divine Diva 2, Hellofalass 3, Mustang Milly 4.