TOP class Tasmanian reinsmanhas been enjoying life in the fast lane of late with his association with the -trained star filly Barynya that won her way onto the Group 1 Vicbred Super Series in Victoria last Friday night.
Back home in Launceston two nights later he was back in the winner's circle, this time aboard his own three-year-old Chopstix Boris that caused a major upset to win the $30,000 Globe Derby Stakes.
It was a hot field and one that would not be out of place in any feature three-year-old race around the country.
Resurgent Spirit was sent out favourite ($3.80) but there was plenty of smart money for Estevao ($4), Rusty Red Comet ($4.60) and the in-form Vande Velde ($5.10) with Chopstix Boris getting into $11.80 after touching $16 midway through betting.
Estevao () was able to hold the lead but when Resurgent Spirit was unable to find a spot with cover from his outside front-row draw driver had no option but to go forward and park outside of the leader.
Chopstix Boris settled near last in the one-out line with Vande Velde at the rear on his back.
Estevao looked set to steal the race when Rattray urged him to extend turning for home but his lesser fancied stablemate Ektoras that had trailed the leader throughout, came off the fence to challenge and looked set to win.
But that's when the tailenders started to swoop and so fast did Chopstix Boris finish he swamped the leaders close to home to score by almost a metre from Ektoras with Estevao a half-head away third.
It was a masterful drive and a brilliant performance by the gelded son offrom Flo Jo Fernandez that won the 2001 bandbox Stakes for 3YO fillies.
Chopstix Boris is owned and raced by Hillier in partnership with his wife Katrina and two of the driver's mates Danny Bennett and Andrew Baxter.
He was originally trained by Hillier who opted to send the gelding toto train.
"He was working well for Rohan but not producing his best on race day and Rohan thought a change of environment would suit him so he sent him to me," Ashwood said.
"Tonight he showed what he could do, although I wasn't that confident with the slow early pace," he said.
Resurgent Spirit ($3.80) battled away in the home straight to finish sixth for what was his first time out of a place in 17 starts.
By Peter Staples