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Darling Downs horseman Aldo Cortopassi is driving in wonderful form and looks set for a winning double at Gloucester Park on Friday night with Roman Aviator in race three and Shadow Roll in the seventh event. He trains Roman Aviator, who is sure to relish a perfect draw at barrier one on the front line in a 1730m sprint event. The five-year-old Roman Aviator has been plagued by unfavourable barriers in recent months but has performed creditably with third placings at three of his past five starts from barriers five, nine and eight. His most recent success was eight starts ago when he began from the No. 6 barrier as an 82/1 outsider. After racing wide in the early stages, Roman Aviator was restrained to the rear before moving forward in the middle stages to the one-out, one-back position. He then unleashed a powerful burst to hit the front in the final 50m and won from the fast-finishing Bettor Party at a 1.56.7 rate over 2130m. Roman Aviator is an excellent frontrunner and Cortopassi is sure to use this quality in a bid for an all-the-way success in a race in which he will clash with smart eight-year-old As Happy As Larry, who will be resuming after a six-month absence. As Happy As Larry, trained and driven by Robbie Williams, will start from barrier six and is capable of a bold first-up showing. Early this year he impressed with placings behind pacers of the calibre of Mighty Conqueror, Im Soxy and Warfare. His latest success was six starts ago when he finished strongly from sixth at the bell to beat Lady De La Renta at a 1.56.1 rate over 2130m early last April.    Shadow Roll, trained at Mt Helena by Ray Williams, is a promising four-year-old who has had 14 starts for six wins and eight placings. He is ideally drawn at barrier two in the 1730m Westral Vertical And Panel Blinds Pace. Shadow Roll has resumed after a spell in fine style with a first-up Pinjarra victory followed by a close third behind Flying Mister Ideal over 2185m at Pinjarra and a wonderful second to Its Rock And Roll over 1684m on the same track. He was most impressive on Monday afternoon when he was eighth at the bell before finishing with a powerful burst to beat all but the stylish frontrunner Its Rock And Roll. The final quarters were run in 28.5sec. and 27.6sec.

Kiwi Bloke, a slow developer who was unplaced at his first 15 starts in New Zealand, has blossomed over the past 12 months and looks set for a strong effort at his debut at Gloucester Park when he contests the Westral Venetian And Honeycomb Blinds Handicap. The comparatively inexperienced six-year-old has developed into a reliable standing-start specialist, with five of his six wins coming in stands. His final seven starts in New Zealand produced two wins (in stands), two seconds and one third and he has had five starts in Western Australia for Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri and reinsman Chris Voak for four wins (three in stands) and one third placing. At his most recent outing, at Pinjarra last Monday week, Kiwi Bloke broke for just one stride soon after the start before dashing to the front after 150m and setting a solid pace to win by three lengths from Burning Shadows, with slick final quarters in 27.5sec. and 27.6sec. Kiwi Bloke is by Courage Under Fire out of the Falcon Seelster mare A Good Kiwi Chick, who raced nine times for four wins, one placings and $15,897. A Good Kiwi Chick’s claim to fame is that she is a half-sister to Kiwi Ingenuity (by Christian Cullen), who amassed $516,821 in stakes from 11 wins and eight placings from 27 starts. She was a brilliant three and four-year-old and at her only Australian start she finished fourth behind Monkey King in the Miracle Mile at Menangle in November 2009. The clash between Kiwi Bloke and Always An Honour should be a highlight of the 11-event program. Always An Honour, a New Zealand-bred four-year-old, is trained by Justin Prentice and will be driven by Gary Hall Jnr. He is also a standing-start specialist, with five starts in stands producing four wins and a third placing. At his most recent outing, Always An Honour dashed over the final 400m sections in 27.9sec. and 28.8sec. to win a 2503m stand at Bunbury on November 16 by more than nine lengths. Adding interest to Friday night’s race will be the return to racing after a ten-month absence of the Ross Olivieri-trained Jimmy Mack, who will start off the 10m mark with Chris Lewis in the sulky. Jimmy Mack warmed up for this assignment when he set the pace and sprinted over the final quarters in 28.7sec. and 27.8sec. in winning a 2116 standing-start trial by eight lengths from Packed Carefully on Sunday morning.   Ken Casellas

Leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond will be making a last-ditch bid to qualify the inexperienced but highly-promising four-year-old Taroona Bromac for a start in the $200,000 Retravision Golden Nugget on Friday week by winning the Westral Outdoor Patio Blinds Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. An impressive performance by Taroona Bromac will strengthen his claims for inclusion in the Golden Nugget field. Leading reinsman Ryan Warwick will handle Taroona Bromac from the No. 2 barrier on the back line in Friday night’s 2130m event and the New Zealand-bred gelding should prove too smart for the opposition, which includes Braeview Bondi, Fake News and After Lunch. Taroona Bromac raced four times in New Zealand for three wins and a second and has had six starts in Western Australia for five wins the first three in effortless fashion in modest company at Kellerberrin and the other two when he set the pace and scored by 13m from Robb Stark over 2130m at Gloucester Park and when leading and beating Whoswhointhezoo by four lengths over 2185m at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon, with a final quarter in a sizzling 26.3sec. The only glitch in Taroona Bromac’s form is his 11th placing behind Theo Aviator in the 2130m group 2 Four-Year-Old Championship two starts ago. He started from the outside of the back line, raced in eighth position in the one-wide line before starting a three-wide move 950m from home and moving into sixth place at the bell. However, he made little impression with the third 400m section of the final mile in 27.9sec. He battled on to finish four lengths behind the winner. The Michael Brennan-trained Braeview Bomber makes strong appeal as the toughest rival for Taroona Bromac on Friday night. The New Zealand-bred five-year-old worked hard in the breeze for much of the way when a fighting second to the pacemaker Just Makemine Diamonds over 2536m last Friday week when the final three quarters whizzed by in 28.9sec., 27.6sec. and 28.8sec. Fake News, an Alta Christiano mare prepared by Gary Hall Snr, will start out wide at barrier eight at her first appearance as a four-year-old. A winner at seven of her 22 starts, Fake News impressed in a 2185m trial at Pinjarra on Sunday morning when she sat behind the pacemaker Twilight Saga before dashing to the front 100m from the finish and winning by more than two lengths, with final quarters of 28.7sec. and 28.1sec.             The lightly-raced After Lunch bounced back to form last Friday night when she raced in sixth position, burst to the front with 750m to travel and won by more than four lengths from Minimum Wage in modest company. She will start from barrier five.   Ken Casellas

Star reinsman Chris Voak freely admits that Gotta Go Gabbana is a pain to drive, but he is lavish in his praise of the tough six-year-old who has drawn perfectly at barrier No. 1 and should prove hard to beat in the Group 1 $125,000 Westral Mares Classic over 2536m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Voak is hoping that Gotta Go Gabbana will make amends for the bad luck she suffered when an 8/1 chance in this feature event 12 months ago. Gotta Go Gabbana started from the No. 2 barrier in last year’s Mares Classic when, in a spirited bid to wrest the early lead from the polemarker Tricky Styx, she locked wheels with Dontstopbelievin and had to be retired with a badly damaged sulky wheel. Voak also has unpleasant memories of the 2015 Mares Classic in which he drove the 11/8 favourite Frith, who started from the outside barrier (No. 9), raced four wide for the first 450m and then in the breeze before fading badly to finish last, 132 metres behind the winner, Nike Franco. Voak also knows that favourites have been beaten in the past five Mares Classics and that Gotta Go Gabbana will have to be on her best behaviour as the likely favourite on Friday night. The most recent favourite to win the Mares Classic was the Chris King-trained Leda McNally, who set the pace from barrier five and won by two and a half lengths from Famous Alchemist in November 2013. This gave Voak his only success in the event. Gotta Go Gabbana, who will be having her fourth start after a beneficial autumn and winter spell, is prepared by Annie Belton, who bred and races the mare with her husband Colin. She is out of Kinney Hanover mare Lady Gabbana, who managed only two wins in minor events at Northam and Gloucester Park from 64 starts, with a notable highlight of her career being her second placing to Supreme Royalty in the group 1 two-year-old fillies State Sires Series final in June 2008. Gotta Go Gabbana, who is related to Bow And Arrow and Snakes And Ladders, top-line performers in Perth in the 1980s, has had 48 starts for 12 wins, 11 seconds, eight thirds and $148,614 in stakes. She will start from the No. 1 barrier for the fourth time. From her previous starts from barrier one Gotta Go Gabbana finished seventh behind El Barcelona at Gloucester Park in November 2016 after breaking gait soon after the start, led and won from Truleylucky over 1684m at a 1.55.8 rate at Pinjarra in November 2017 and led and won from won from Mileys Desire over 2536m at Gloucester Park in June 2018. Voak, who is mindful that Gotta Go Gabbana has a tendency to pull in her races, will be keen to jump to the front and dictate terms. He has been delighted with the mare’s past two runs --- sustaining a spirited burst from the rear to finish fourth behind Our Alfie Romeo in the Norms Daughter Classic last Friday week and then trailing the pacemaker Bettor Reward, getting clear 250m from home and finishing strongly four wide to be third behind Caviar Star and Speed Man over 2130m last Friday night. Blythewood trainer Michael Brennan will be looking for a strong performance from the talented Miss Sangrial, who will be driven by Kyle Harper from the favourable No. 2 barrier. Miss Sangrial, who will be having her fourth run after a spell, has led and won at ten of her 16 victories. Arma Indie (barrier three) and Dracarys (four) are racing keenly and have sound prospects. Arma Indie, trained by Mike Reed and to be handled by Michael Grantham, maintained her splendid form when she started from barrier two and enjoyed an ideal passage, one-out and one-back, before fighting on to finish second to Our Alfie Romeo in the Norms Daughter Classic. Dracarys, trained at Boyanup by Justin Prentice, has resumed after a spell in good form, following a first-up third behind Bill Haley with a tough win from the breeze (beating Millwood Molly) and a solid third in the Norms Daughter Classic after enjoying the perfect trail behind the pacemaker Our Alfie Romeo. She will be driven by Gary Hall jnr, who has won the Mares Classic with Im Elsa (2011), Majorly Foxy Styx (2014) and Ideal Alice (2017). Prentice also has been prominent as a trainer in the Mares Classic with a third placing by Bettor Dreams (2014), a win by The Parade (2-016) and a third with Quite A Delight (2017). Leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, who won the 2012 Mares Classic with Baby Bling, will be pinning their faith on the ultra-consistent Our Alfie Romeo, an easy all-the-way winner of the 2130m Norms Daughter Classic last Friday week. But Our Alfie Romeo, to be driven by Ryan Warwick, faces a stern test from the outside of the back line. Chris Lewis, who had the choice of driving Queen Shenandoah, Sarah Goody and Pick My Pocket, has opted to handle the Kevin Keys-trained Sarah Goody, who finished strongly from the one-out, one-back position to score an impressive win over 2130m last Friday night. Sarah Goody is ideally drawn on the inside of the back line and has sound prospects of giving Lewis his third win in this event, after victories with Jilsander in 2007 and Ima Spicey Lombo in 2010. Queen Shenandoah, trained by Ross Olivieri, will be driven by Aldo Cortopassi and Nathan Turvey has been engaged for the Prentice-trained Pick My Pocket.   Ken Casellas

In-form Serpentine trainer Matt Scott is bursting with enthusiasm at the winning prospects of Rock Me Over, who has drawn perfectly at barrier one on the front line in the opening event, the 1730m Simmonds Steel Precision Laser Cutting Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Rock Me Over, to be driven by Shannon Suvaljko, has an outstanding record from the No. 1 barrier at Gloucester Park, having started there six times for four wins, one second and one fourth placing. “He’s in a rich vein of form,” said Scott. “And he’s such a happy horse at the moment and he has pulled up well after last Friday’s amazing run when second to Four Starzzz Forsa.” Rock Me Over was restrained from barrier five last week and dropped back to last in the field of seven when the lead time in the 2130m event was a sizzling 35.1sec. Suvaljko attempted to catch the leaders napping when he set Rock Me Over alight after a lap. The five-year-old moved to second with 1150m to travel, but he was kept three wide by Four Starzzz Forsa in the breeze, outside the pacemaker Thereugo. Wisely, Suvaljko again restrained Rock Me Over, who was eased back to last position. Rock Me Over was sixth on the home turn and sprinted strongly, out four wide, to finish second. “To make two runs like that last week was quite remarkable,” said Scott. “I thought that it would be a super run if he finished fourth or fifth. The hard run won’t worry him, and he has raced three times in a week before. “I think that his best run was three starts ago on a Tuesday when Chris Voak drove him and the horse faced the breeze and won, with a 55.8sec. last half. “He can lead from barrier one this week. He held out Mon Lillies when he won four starts ago. It’s a quick line this week with Bhagwan, Dominate The Dojo, Tanaka Eagle (as well as Mon Lillies and Extreme Prince). But I think he can hold them out and set the pace.”   Ken Casellas

Hopeland trainer Giles Inwood is looking forward keenly to a new experience watching the first square-gaiter he has prepared contesting the Etch Coatings Mobile Sandblasting Trot over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. “Tenno Sho is ready to run a good race and I’ll be disappointed if he doesn’t finish in the top three,” Inwood said. “I have leased him from Nathan Turvey and he arrived at my stables on Monday of last week. Nathan said that Tenno Sho (who has a losing sequence of 11) needed a change of environment. “Tenno Show is a bit more highly strung than my pacers. I lead him in his work and take him to the beach.” Inwood has engaged Chris Voak to drive Tenno Sho and Voak was impressed when he handled the seven-year-old in a workout on the Byford track on Tuesday morning, saying: “He’s a good frontrunner and a good each-way chance.” Tenno Sho, who should appreciate the prize No. 1 barrier, won five times in Victoria before Turvey prepared him for six wins (four at Pinjarra and two at Bunbury). He has raced nine times at Gloucester Park for three seconds and two thirds. Considerable interest will centre on the Nigel Johns-trained Rock Tonight, who will be driven by Morgan Woodley from the outside barrier (No. 9) on the front line. Rock Tonight, a New Zealand-bred eight-year-old, gave a powerful performance at his second appearance in Western Australia when he worked hard in the breeze before finishing with great determination to win from the pacemaker Lord Liam over 2692m at Pinjarra on Monday of last week. Rock Tonight, who has a history of erratic behaviour in his races, is sure to prove very hard to beat if he trots smoothly on Friday night when he will again clash with the brilliant Bob Mellsop-trained Lord Liam, who will be driven by Maddison Brown from barrier seven. Lord Liam had won eight times in a row before his last-start defeat and he again will be a strong contender this week when his clash with Rock Tonight, Tenno Sho, Ton Tine, Spud, Tokyo Joe and Lightning Calder should provide plenty of action.   Ken Casellas

Chris Voak, who is driving in superb form, has given punters a strong lead by choosing to handle Queen Shenandoah in preference to stablemate Just Makemine Diamonds in the Simmonds Steel Fencing And Gates Pace over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Voak drove hot favourite Just Makemine Diamonds to an impressive all-the-way victory over Braeview Bondi at a 1.57.9 rate over 2536m last Friday night and later in the program he was in the sulky behind Queen Shenandoah, a 50/1 outsider from barrier eight in a 2130m event in which she enjoyed an ideal passage, one-out and one-back, before finishing solidly to be a one-length second to the pacemaker Ocean Ridge, who rated 1.57.1. Queen Shenandoah and Just Makemine Diamonds (to be driven by Chris Lewis) are five-year-olds by American sire Somebeachsomewhere and are trained by Ross Olivieri. They are on trial for the $125,000 Westral Mares Classic on Friday of next week. Queen Shenandoah will start from the inside of the back line and Just Makemine Diamonds is drawn at barrier two on the back line. They should fight out the finish with smart last-start winners Radiant Amber and Tajie Baby, who will have many admirers from favourable front-line barriers. Olivieri is pleased with the progress of Just Makemine Diamonds and Queen Shenandoah, declaring: “There’s nothing between them at the moment.” Voak shares the trainer’s admiration for the stablemates, saying: “I like both mares and it is hard to split them. “Queen Shenandoah is classy and is still on the way up. From barrier ten she will sit and sprint home. She’s a fast mare and can definitely win; she just needs luck.”  Both the New Zealand-bred Queen Shenandoah and the Victorian-bred Just Makemine Diamonds are well travelled. Queen Shenandoah has won once in New Zealand, four times in Victoria and three times in South Australia, while Just Makemine Diamonds has been placed in New Zealand and New South Wales and has won twice in Victoria, six times in South Australia and once in WA. Radiant Amber, to be driven by Aiden de Campo for Baskerville trainer Ryan Bell, is handily drawn at barrier two on the front line and is racing keenly, with five wins on country tracks from her past nine starts. Tajie Baby, trained by Sue Wiscombe and to be driven by Lindsay Harper, is a speedy beginner and is well suited from the No. 3 barrier. She led from barrier three and won by a head from Flying Mister Ideal over 2536m at Gloucester Park on Tuesday of last week. Voak is also enthusiastic about the prospects of the Annie Belton-trained Gotta Go Gabbana in the Simmonds Steel Decorative Screens Pace over 2130m in which the six-year-old mare will start from the inside of the back line, immediately behind the likely pacemaker Bettor Reward. “She will improve heaps on her second-up fourth behind Our Alfie Romeo, Arma Indie and Dracarys last week,” Voak said. “Ten is the worst draw for her; she’s hard work, she pulls and is not easy to drive. But she’ll go good.” Last week from the outside barrier (No. 9) Gotta Go Gabbana settled down in 11th position before sustaining a strong three-wide burst. Bettor Reward, to be driven by Chris Lewis for Serpentine trainer Clint Hall, should prove hard to beat from the No. 1 barrier. He has started from barrier one at Gloucester Park six times for three all-the-way wins, a third, a fourth and a seventh.   Ken Casellas

Trainer Hayden Reeves has 14 pacers in work at his Coolup stables and he will be a busy man at Gloucester Park on Friday night when he starts eight horses in the eighth event, the $18,000 Etch Coatings Pace over 2130m. He hopes to dominate the event and has a leaning towards Unwritten Rule, who will be driven by Bailey McDonough from the No. 2 barrier on the front line. McDonough had the choice of the stable runners and he opted for Unwritten Rule, a four-year-old he drove to victory in slow time at Wagin last Friday night when the gelding started from the back line and settled down in seventh position, one-out and two-back, before starting a three-wide move at the bell. Unwritten Rule got to the front 220m from home when the leader Ultimate Joe broke into a gallop. Unwritten Rule has raced only twice at Gloucester Park for a sixth and an eighth placing. “My best chances are Unwritten Rule and Whitbys Gamble (barrier six),” said the 38-year-old Reeves, who explained that eight was his favourite number as well as being the date of his birthday (September 8, 1981). “The plan is for Unwritten Rule to jump to the front, and if he does, he won’t be handing up. They are my initial thoughts, but if Whitbys Gamble (to be handled by Morgan Woodley) finds herself in a prominent position in the early stages, she may even roll to the top. It’s very hard to make plans with so many runners.” One horse given a strong chance of foiling a Reeves bid for victory is veteran New South Wales-bred gelding Change of Address, who is handily drawn at barrier three on the front line and should appreciate a drop in class. Change of Address, to be driven by Rob Abercromby, has a losing sequence of 62 and has won just once from his past 86 starts. However, his recent form, including fourths at Northam and Narrogin, has been encouraging.   Ken Casellas

Cracking reinsman Chris Voak gave punters a strong lead when he opted to drive Space Junk in the $30,000 Kersley final over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. He had the choice of trainer Ross Olivieri’s other runners Iceenothink and Atmospherical, who have drawn favourably at barriers No. 2 and No. 3, respectively, with Space Junk out wide at barrier eight. “Space Junk has drawn badly, but I’ll stick with him,” Voak said. “I have always rated Space Junk highly, but he’s had a horrific campaign. He’s been up for a long time after his injury and hasn’t shown the horse that he promised to be. If he doesn’t show something this week, I think he will be asking for the paddock. Space Junk won three standing-start races in a row in September before a seventh in a stand behind Destined To Rule and a close fourth behind Carrera Mach after a tough run in a 2503m stand. Perhaps a return to mobile racing this week will enable Space Junk to bounce back to top form. Iceenothink will be driven by Stuart McDonald and Mitch Miller has been engaged for Atmospherical. Voak drove Iceenothink when the seven-year-old finished third behind Gran Chico and Dominate The Dojo last Friday night. Iceenothink was badly cramped for room. “He impressed me,” Voak said. “He had heaps to give. If I’d had a trouble-free run Shannon (Suvaljko) would have been fumbling for the ear plugs on Gran Chico. I pretty much pushed Shannon through to the dust sheet to the line, I finished that quick and Gran Chico really wasn’t going anywhere. “Shannon had eased up on him and his horse stopped and I couldn’t stop mine. If I had come wide Shannon would have had to get fair dinkum on Gran Chico, for sure.”   Ken Casellas

Noted speedster Thereugo is ready to end a losing sequence of ten, according to veteran reinsman Lindsay Harper. Seven-year-old Thereugo will start from barrier four and Harper plans to use the gelding’s explosive gate speed in a bid to wrest the early lead from another brilliant frontrunner in Mad Robber, who had drawn perfectly at barrier one. Mad Robber, a nine-year-old prepared by Hall of Fame trainer Gary Hall snr, gave further proof of his excellence as a frontrunner when he began fast from the No. 1 barrier, set the pace and sprinted the final 800m in 55.7sec. to win by just under two lengths from Charlie El and Roman Aviator. Champion reinsman Gary Hall Jnr, who guided Mad Robber to his easy victory last week, is serving a ten-day suspension for causing interference and Stuart McDonald is certain to prove more than an able substitute. McDonald will be anxious to win the start and then dictate terms in front. But Harper believes that Thereugo has the necessary speed to assume control soon after the mobile barrier sends the field of seven on its way. “This appears to be a drop in class,” said Harper. “Thereugo has been racing against some quality horses. However, this is not a bad field, but it looks like that my horse should get across to lead and prove hard to beat. “Thereugo begins very fast from the 2130m start. They all seem to begin faster in the back straight than they do in the front straight. I’ll be aiming to get to the front and if I do, I won’t be handing up.” Thereugo, a 33/1 outsider from barrier seven in much stronger company in a 2130m event last Friday night, revealed his customary early brilliance when he charged to the front after 120m. King of Swing, a dual group 1 winner and with earnings of $474,977, was set alight by Gary Hall Jnr after a lap and burst past Thereugo and into the lead 1000m from home. King of Swing went on to win by two lengths at a 1.54.4 rate from Simba Bromac, with Thereugo fighting on doggedly to by a half-head away in third place. Harper said that he had previously not handed up the lead when driving Therego, who is prepared by Sue Wiscombe. “But last week Michael Grantham came off the pegs and into the breeze with Mighty Flying Deal soon after the start and challenged me.” Thereugo withstood the challenged from Mighty Flying Deal and Harper said that after Mighty Flying Deal had been in the breeze for about 600m, he (Harper) was backing off the speed when King of Swing emerged with a sparkling burst from the rear. “I thought better of it (attempting to retain the lead) and so I let King of Swing go,” Harper said. “I had never handed up with Thereugo before and I don’t intend to do so this week. “Thereugo’s recent runs have been very good and they point to a win. Last week the mile rate for the 2130m was 1.54.4 and a fortnight earlier Thereugo sat outside the leader and fought on to be fourth, with the winner Bettor Reward rating 1.54.6 for the 1730m.” Despite Harper’s confidence, Mad Robber is sure to have an army of supporters who insist that punters who ignore the No.1 barrier do so at their own peril. These aficionados also can point to the fact that Mad Robber has led all the way for six of his 15 wins and that he has started from the No. 1 barrier eight times at Gloucester Park for four wins, one second and three unplaced efforts.   Ken Casellas

Little New Zealand-bred filly Tiffany Rose is poised to make a successful debut at Gloucester Park when she starts from barrier five in the Better Your Bet With TABtouch Pace over 2130m on Friday night. To be driven by Michael Grantham for Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed, Tiffany Rose was selected by owners Jim and Wilma Giumelli, who were greatly impressed by her performances in several rich Group 1 and Group 2 feature events for two-year-old fillies in New Zealand early this year. “Jim and Wilma pick their horses out after watching a lot of race and trial videos,” said Reed. “They said that they liked this filly and asked me if I’d like to go to New Zealand and have a look at her. So, I went over and drove her in a workout at Addington and discovered that she is quite quick. “She has got good gate speed and I thought that she would be suited by WA racing. Her videos were good and she raced against Group 1 horses.” Tiffany Rose certainly looked the part with four seconds and three thirds from eight starts, almost exclusively in group 1 and 2 events, in New Zealand when she matched strides with star fillies from the Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen training establishment in Sweet On Me (six wins and $246,960 from seven starts) and Amazing Dream (six wins and five placings for stakes of $236,342 from `12 starts). Tiffany Rose, who is by American stallion Somebeachsomewhere, has raced twice for her new owners for stylish wins over 1684m at Pinjarra in the past few weeks when she rated 1.55.4 and 1.55.1. At her most recent outing, Tiffany Rose started from barrier six, dashed to the lead after 200m and went on to win by seven lengths from Elleker Hanover, with final quarters of 28.2sec. and 27.8sec. While Tiffany Rose possesses excellent gate speed and is a good frontrunner, Reed has worked on her versatility at training, saying: “We were a little worried what she would be like from behind. So, in trackwork I have always sat her --- and then she kicks like a mule.” Capel trainer-reinsman Aiden de Campo is confident that his talented locally-bred filly Some Copper Beach (by the same sire as Tiffany Rose’s sire) will perform strongly and prove hard to beat. Some Copper Beach, a winner at five of her ten starts as a two-year-old, including the Gold Bracelet in July, made a splendid return to racing as a three-year-old at Gloucester Park last Friday night when she began speedily from barrier four, set the pace and sprinted over the final 400m section in 28.4sec. to win by two lengths at a 1.58.3 rate over 2130m from smart colts Secret Operation and Jaspervellabeach. “She was pretty forward and had had a fair bit of work under her belt, so I was pretty confident that if she was able to get to the top she was going to win,” de Campo said. “It’s always hard for a filly to measure up to the colts and geldings. She did that as a two-year-old and last week she measured up to them again. I was pretty happy. “Some Copper Beach is being set for the WA Oaks, which looks like being a tough race to win, with fillies like Tiffany Rose and Dave Hunter’s My Sweet Deal among the leading candidates.” Tiffany Rose and Some Copper Beach will clash with the promising filly Intheskyrocket, whom is favourably drawn at barrier two for leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond and star reinsman Ryan Warwick. Intheskyrocket won twice as a two-year-old but failed when a distant first-up seventh and last behind Hotfoot It at Pinjarra on October 28 when she suffered an atrial fibrillation. She then impressed in a Byford trial on Sunday morning when she raced wide early, took the lead after 200m and was not extended in winning easily by almost seven lengths at a modest 2.0.7 rate.   Ken Casellas

High-priced New Zealand import Gran Chico has settled down well since arriving in Perth a fortnight ago and he looks set for a successful Australian harness racing debut when he contests the Catalano Truck and Equipment Sales Service Finance Pace over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Now in the care of astute Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed, Gran Chico will be driven by Shannon Suvaljko, who is happy that the Bettors Delight gelding will be the sole runner off the back line. “From barrier ten there’s no horse on his outside and he’ll have time to relax before being put into the race,” Suvaljko said. “He’s a nice horse who should prove hard to beat. “I’ve watched the replays of all his races in New Zealand. He is a big horse who loves to just come into the race and he should get a good run from barrier ten. “Mike told me that the plan was, with the horse having been here for only a couple of weeks, was not to throw him in the deep end straight away (by racing in the group 2 feature for four-year-olds on Friday night). And after this week’s race, the plan is to go into the $125,000 Four-Year-Old Classic in two weeks and then the Golden Nugget two weeks after that.” Gran Chico, who has been purchased by Jim and Wilma Giumelli, last appeared when he gave a splendid performance to finish a close fourth behind top-flight pacers Chase Auckland, Ashley Locaz and Smokin By in the Group 3 Methven Cup on October 13.  This was a 3000m stand on a rain-affected grass track and Gran Chico galloped briefly at the start before settling down in fourth place. A 5/1 chance, he dashed to the front after about 500m before surrendering the lead after a lap to the 6/4 favourite Ashley Locaz. He finished gamely along the inside. At his previous outing, nine nights earlier, Gran Chico settled in sixth position and raced in the breeze before taking the lead 1000m from home for an easy first-up victory at a 1.57.1 rate in a 1980m mobile event at Addington. That was his first appearance since June 1 when he gave a superb performance on a wet track to finish third behind Mark Purdon’s Jesse Duke in the $150,000 Group 1 Emerald at Addington. He started from the outside barrier (No. 8) on the front line and settled down in 12th and last position before starting a three-wide run from last about 1100m from home. He raced three wide for much of the final circuit and finished with great determination. Gran Chico’s chief rival on Friday night is likely to be the polemarker Dominate The Dojo, who has finished creditable thirds to Bettor Reward and Mighty Santana at his first two starts since resuming from a spell. The Kevin Keys-trained Dominate The Dojo will again be handled by Chris Lewis, who said: “He’s a consistent little horse who is always going to be about the play. He’s got gate speed and we will push forward and see what happens.” Dylan Egerton-Green will drive the Karen Thompson-trained Our Perkins, who is handily drawn at barrier three on the front line. “He is racing really well and will run a bit of a race if I can find the top,” Egerton-Green said. With Suvaljko committed to drive Gran Chico, Byford trainer Courtney Burch had to find a new driver for Sergeant Oats, an impressive winner from Ocean Ridge last Friday night. Burch has engaged Gary Hall Jnr to handle Sergeant Oats, who is sure to be prominent from the No. 4 barrier.   Ken Casellas

Rising star Wildwest is spot on to tackle the three rich feature events for four-year-olds, but champion trainer Gary Hall Snr says that it will be far from a stroll in the park for the New Zealand-bred gelding when he starts from barrier six in the $50,000 Catalano Truck and Equipment 4YO Championship over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. But Hall remains optimistic that Wildwest will meet the challenge with his usual zest and retain his unbeaten before he tackles the $125,000 Simmonds Steel Four-Year-Old Classic and the $200,000 Retravision Golden Nugget over the next month.   “He’s on target for all the big four-year-old classics and he seems to have all bases covered,” said Hall, who added: “From barrier six this week, he faces a real test against some very nice horses. “Wildwest is a bit nervy, light-framed and a very good mover. He can stay and he’s got speed. You don’t have to be a star to win eight in a row, but I think that Wildwest is a star. In saying that, I admit that this is a hard race and he faces a real test this week.” Wildwest, who has the services of the recently crowned winner of the Australian Drivers’ Championship in Gary Hall jnr, won by big margins at his first seven starts before he had his admirers on tenterhooks at his eighth start, in a $25,000 four-year-old feature event over 2185m at Pinjarra last Monday week, when he began from the outside barrier (five) on the back line. Wildwest settled down in tenth position before he was sent forward, three wide, after 550m and quickly moved to the breeze outside the pacemaker Patrickthepiranha. These two geldings were locked together over the final 250m before Wildwest got up in the final stride to snatch victory by a half-head, rating 1.56.8. “I didn’t have my heart in my mouth; I always thought he was going to win,” said Hall Snr. “I know that he didn’t win by much, but on the line he was surging clear. I’m not really all that apprehensive about watching him on Friday night. But I’d like to see him maintain his unbeaten record.” The Hall stable will also be represented in this week’s event by Robbie Easton (Maddison Brown, barrier 2) and Eloquent Mach (Stuart McDonald, No. 2 on the back line). Robbie Easton has won at nine of his 26 starts and has struck a purple patch with decisive Gloucester Park victories at his past three starts. He charged home, three wide, from sixth at the bell to win easily at a 1.56.2 rate last Friday night. “Robbie Easton will go forward, but I’m not sure whether he can hold out Patrickthepiranha,” said Hall snr. “He goes good in front and we’d like to lead.” Eloquent Mach, who has won at 11 of his 22 starts, was a battling fourth behind Wildwest at Pinjarra after enjoying a cosy trip behind the pacemaker. “He was disappointing,” admitted Hall. Dylan Egerton-Green, who will handle Patrickthepiranha, and Chris Lewis, who will drive Gee Jay Kay, are looking forward optimistically to Friday night’s race. “Patrickthepiranha’s first two runs after a spell have been good and he definitely showed a lot more fitness from his first run to his second run,” Egerton-Green said. “So, I’m hoping he can keep on improving. The draw (barrier five) is a bit difficult, like it was at Pinjarra at his latest start (when the gelding showed explosive gate speed from barrier seven to burst to the front). “I’ll have to assess (my tactics) early, about what’s going on, particularly with Robbie Easton, Sangue Reale and Gee Jay Kay on his inside. They are all racing well and this will be another good test for Patrickthepiranha, who was probably a bit unlucky when beaten a half-head by Wildwest at Pinjarra. “He dropped a knee boot about 150 metres from the finish and this was in a quick quarter (26.7sec.) which didn’t help. The dropped knee boot affected him, but that’s racing. Wildwest has drawn right outside me this week and he’s probably got to do the same amount of work that I’ll need to do to get into the race. “And Wildwest is not the only horse to beat. They are all quality horses and it’s definitely a match race between the whole lot. Since his run at Pinjarra Patrickthepiranha has worked really well, and so has his stablemate Its Rock And Roll. It probably boils down to who gets the most economical run.” Gee Jay Kay, a winner at ten of his 23 starts and trained by Ross Olivieri, looms as a major player in this week’s event in which he is handily drawn at barrier three on the front line. Gee Jay Kay gave an outstanding performance to win a stand over 2631m at Pinjarra on Monday of last week after galloping fiercely at the start. “I reckon he gave the leaders about 60 metres start,” Lewis said. “And I didn’t expect him to do what he did. I thought that I’d just follow them around, but when we were coming in for the bell Gee Jay Kay was travelling a bit and I thought I’d flush a couple out and just track up and see how close we could get. “Nothing came out, so I just kept going and he went on with the job really well. From barrier three this week he’s definitely going to be in play. He feels a different horse at the barrier now from what he was when I drove him at trials. He feels very confident and I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets off the gate (begins fast). “It is a very good field and Wildwest doesn’t know when to give up. These horses are all going to go to fast-class. It’s a very impressive field.” The powerful Greg and Skye Bond stable will be represented by extremely smart New Zealand-bred pacers in Ana Afreet and Taroona Bromac, with the stable’s No. 1 reinsman Ryan Warwick handing punters a good tip by choosing to drive the lightly-raced Taroona Bromac, who will start from the outside of the back line. At his debut in New Zealand Taroona Bromac was narrowly beaten before scoring impressive victories at his following seven starts, the latest being last Friday night when he set the pace and coasted to victory by more than four lengths from Robb Stark. Ana Afreet, a winner at 12 of his 17 starts, is in sparkling form and will be driven by Bailey McDonough. However, he faces a stern test from out wide at barrier eight. Ken Casellas

Jaspervellabeach, a star two-year-old last season when his four wins from six starts included the Group 2 Champagne Classic and the Group 1 Golden Slipper, will reappear after a four-month absence when he contests the Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Coolup owner-trainer Kristy Elson has a few concerns about the colt following his roguish behaviour in recent trials. But the style in which he set the pace and coasted to victory in a 2185m trial at Pinjarra on Sunday morning was a strong indication that he has sound winning prospects despite drawing the outside barrier in the field of seven. He began speedily from barrier four and charged straight to the front. After a modest pace in the first lap Jaspervellabeach dashed over the final 400m sections in 29.7sec. and 27.8sec. to win, unextended, by a length from Livin La Bamba. “I have trialled him twice (at Pinjarra) when his first trial wasn’t impressive at all,” said Elson. “Then I trialled him again last Sunday when I took the blinds off him because he had the blocks on, and I put him in an open bridle. “He went straight to the front and ran good time. But he was looking around and is getting a bit bully. So, I’m not sure if he is just mucking around and it will be interesting to see how he goes (in race conditions) on Friday night. I’m not sure whether he’s mucking around just because it’s trials and not at the races or whether he’s getting a bit older and a little bit silly. “I’m not sure how he will go on Friday night. It sort of depends on what he does from the outside barrier. It will depend on how Nathan (Turvey) feels after he has warmed up. He’s a lovely horse, but I’m not putting too much pressure on him. I just want to see how he goes.  “He might need to be gelded. But, hopefully, he’s just been mucking around at trials and knows when it’s pay day. We’ll see.” Elson will also be represented in Friday night’s event for three-year-olds by Secret Operation, who will start from barrier six with Gary Hall Jnr in the sulky. Secret Operation disappointed at his third outing after a spell when, from barrier three, he raced in sixth position, one-out and two-back, before wilting to finish a well-beaten seventh behind Rock me Over in a fast-run 2130m event on Tuesday evening. That followed easy wins at Gloucester Park over 2130m and 1730m at his two previous outings, after resuming from a spell. It is possible the colt was a little underdone and should be capable of an  improved effort on Friday night when Macz Brother, a half-brother to star mare Maczaffair (63 starts for 21 wins, 19 placings and $507,497) and the speedy Golden State (30 starts for 12 wins, six placings and $146,028) should prove hard to beat at his Gloucester Park debut. Macz Brother, trained by Mike Reed and to be driven by Michael Grantham, has raced three times for wins at Pinjarra and Northam and a third placing behind Hotfoot It at Pinjarra. At his most recent appearance Macz Brother began from the back line in a 1780m event at Northam last Saturday week when he settled in seventh position, was eighth at the bell and charged to the front with 420m to travel before winning by five lengths from Pocketfulofpepper. Ace trainer-reinsman Colin Brown will be keen to add to Adda Pocket Rinse’s record of three starts for three wins when he drives the Rich And Spoilt gelding. Adda Pocket Rinse possess excellent gate speed, but could find it difficult to cross to the front from barrier five. Adding considerable interest to the race will be the return to action of Some Copper Beach, the only filly in the event who will start from the No. 4 barrier for Capel trainer-reinsman Aiden de Campo. Some Copper Beach was a star two-year-old last season when her ten starts produced five wins, two seconds and a third.   Ken Casellas

Exciting five-year-old Bill Haley is capable of a bold harness racing effort in the 2130m $25,000 Pat Cranley Memorial at Gloucester Park on Friday night despite a steep rise in class, according to the New Zealand-bred gelding’s reinsman Chris Lewis. Bill Haley unleashed a spectacular finishing burst from a seemingly impossible position at the rear on the home turn to get up and snatch a remarkable victory from Hy Leexciting at a 1.55.9 rate over 2130m last Friday night. He was restrained from barrier eight and was eighth at the 250m mark before his whirlwind five-wide charge relieved the strain on the supporters of the odds-on favourite. This week Bill Haley, prepared by the champion reinsman’s wife Debra, will be seriously tested in much tougher company and from out wide at barrier seven in the field of nine. He is undefeated at three starts in Western Australia after winning at four of his final five races in Queensland. “He goes quite a lot in class and it’s another big test,” said Lewis. “It never gets easier. His main asset is his speed, but you have got to be realistic and Mighty Conqueror looks very hard to beat from barrier one. However, I still believe Bill Haley can measure up to this rise in class, whether it is this week or in three or four week’s time. “He’s certainly got a bit of class on his side and he can definitely play a bit in the Fremantle and WA Pacing Cups. He has a good turn of foot and if he’s close enough, he’ll give them a bit of curry.” Mighty Conqueror, a comparatively inexperienced performer whose 21 starts have produced 14 wins and five placings, looks the winner from the prized No. 1 barrier. He moved to the breeze after a lap in the 2130m Parliamentarians Cup last Friday week and took the lead 500m from home before being overhauled in the final couple of strides by Motu Premier, who finished strongly from sixth at the bell. Chris Voak, who drives Motu Premier for Oakford trainer Ross Olivieri, said he expected another bold showing from the New Zealand-bred seven-year-old. “Ross has a plan for him to go to the Bunbury Cup in a couple of Saturdays time,” Voak said. “Barrier five is not ideal on Friday night and we will probably have to sit outside Mighty Conqueror and if he beats that pacer he will be putting his hand up to be a real good chance to win a Cup at the summer carnival.” Leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond will be represented by three runners Mighty Conqueror (Ryan Warwick), Our Jimmy Johnstone (Bailey McDonough), El Jacko (Dylan Egerton-Green) and Galactic Star (Colin Brown). El Jacko is in top form and was a splendid second behind stablemate Vampiro in the Stratton Cup last Friday night when he trailed the pacemaker Major Pocket and was blocked for a clear passage until late when he finished strongly on the inside. El Jacko is awkwardly drawn at barrier six, but Egerton-Green is expecting a strong effort from the seven-year-old. “I was very happy with his performance last week and I hope he can keep earning this week,” he said. Galactic Star is a top-class performer who will be appearing for the first time since finishing at the rear in the WA Pacing Cup last January. A week earlier Galactic Star covered a lot of extra ground when a splendid second to My Field Marshal in the 2536m Fremantle Cup. The Bond stable also has solid winning claims in the $22,000 Catalano Truck and Equipment Sales Kenwick WA Pace, a 2130m event in which Mighty Santana will start from the outside in the field of eight. Mighty Santana, to be driven by Ryan Warwick, has resumed after a spell in fine style and he impressed when he worked hard before scoring a comfortable win over El Hombre last Friday night. Mighty Flying Deal, to be driven by Michael Grantham for Collie trainer Wayne Justins, will be strongly favoured from the prized No. 1 barrier. The seven-year-old is a strong frontrunner who will take plenty of catching. King of Swing, the WA Derby winner two seasons ago, will be having his final start in Western Australia when Gary Hall Jnr drives him from barrier six. King of Swing, a winner of 18 races and $474,977 in prizemoney, has a losing sequence of ten. “Win, lose or draw, this will be his final run for the stable,” said trainer Gary Hall Snr. “He will be going to Sydney where he will be trained by Luke McCarthy. “He is not suited by racing at Gloucester Park unless he leads. He is a winner of two Group 1 races, but I’m not able to get the best out of him.”   Ken Casellas

It had to be seen to be believed. That’s the verdict after watching an outstanding performance by lightly-raced five-year-old Ocean Ridge at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon. At his first appearance in a stand, Ocean Ridge galloped hopelessly at the start and settled down in last position in a field of 12, more than 15 lengths from the early pacemaker. He was tenth at the bell and ninth with 600m to travel before sustaining a spirited burst which carried him into second place behind Gee Jay Kay. The Greg and Skye Bond-trained gelding will return to mobile racing when he starts from the No. 5 barrier in the opening event, the Catalano Truck and Equipment Pace over 2536m at Gloucester Park on Friday night. Ocean Ridge has had four starts since resuming from a spell and has finished second in three of those races, and the winner at seven of his 20 starts is ready to return to the winning list. He won at three of his ten starts in New Zealand and has raced ten times in WA for four wins and three seconds. He showed his class last year when he was an easy winner of a WA Derby prelude, beating King of Swing and Speed Man, before covering a lot of extra ground and finishing an excellent fourth behind King of Swing, Beachers Brook and Cott Beach in the Derby final. Ocean Ridge is awkwardly drawn at barrier five on Friday night, but has the class to overcome that disadvantage and win from in-form pacers The Dali Express, The Verandah, Sergeant Oats and Jack William. Ocean Ridge will be handled by his regular reinsman Ryan Warwick, who has excellent winning prospects with other Bond-trained pacers Mighty Santana, Ana Malak, Our Alfie Romeo, Twilight Saga and Taroona Bromac. Warwick is also looking forward to representing Western Australia, along with Gary Hall Jnr, in the seven heats (all over 2090m) of the Australian Derivers’ Championship in Hobart of Saturday night. Hall will miss Friday night’s Gloucester Park meeting and Stuart McDonald will have a busy night replacing Hall on seven horses, all with sound each-way prospects. His best drive should prove to be Robbie Easton, an up-and-coming four-year-old in race seven, the Allwood Stud Farm Pace.   Ken Casellas

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