Just as it looked like it was going to be a war between the favourites Locharburn and Tiger Tara, Isaiah sprouted wings late to nab victory in the $40,000 Group Two feature at Addington.
“Mark (Purdon) thought we might be a run short tonight so I’m pleasantly surprised,” said co-owner Phil Kennard. “I’m really looking forward to next week’s Derby now, especially if he improves on that,” he enthused.
Driven by Natalie Rasmussen, who combined with the three-year-old to win the Sales Series Final on New Year’s Eve, Isaiah came with a powerful run down centre track to claim victory by a nose over Locharburn. Tiger Tara, who set up the hot tempo, was a further neck back in third.
“He has been going good races all season and the hot tempo really suited him tonight,” said co-trainer Mark Purdon.
Purdon was also pleased with the run of Messini, who finished fourth, while Alleluia, who was the top rated stable three-year-old going into the race, disappointed finishing at the tail of the field.
Isaiah, who paced the 1950 metre journey in a scintillating 2-18.9, was just one of three winning drives for Natalie Rasmussen, who alongside partner Mark trained six winners tonight.
Those winners were: All Star Man (Natalie Rasmussen), King Denny (Mark Purdon), Raesawinner (Natalie Rasmussen), Isaiah (Natalie Rasmussen), Hug The Wind (Blair Orange), and Saratoga (Tony Herlihy), who was successful at Alexandra Park.
Meanwhile, Royal Aspirations trotted a New Zealand record when winning the 4 & 5YO Trotters Championship, while Majestic Time showed her class by winning NZ Trotting Oaks in emphatic fashion.
By Mitchell Robertson