Day At The Track

Suvaljko aims to lead with Rocknroll Whitby

06:40 PM 18 Feb 2016 NZDT
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Rocknroll Whitby
Rocknroll Whitby
JMH Photography
GPTV speaks to Callan Suvaljko

Byford trainer-reinsman Callan Suvaljko is confident that catch-me-if-you-can tactics will prove successful with smart frontrunner Rocknroll Whitby in the $25,000 Central Equity Sales Classic for harness racing three-year-old colts and geldings at Gloucester Park on Friday night.

Suvaljko is planning to make every post a winner after Rocknroll Whitby drew the prized No. 1 barrier in the 2130m event.

“I’ll be coming out all guns blazing,” he declared. “He’s a ten times better horse in front. In front, he can run good quarters. I’ve changed some gear this week and he worked extremely well at Byford today (Tuesday) on a very windy morning.

“If he leads I will be very disappointed if he doesn’t get the money. I think he’s back to the form that he showed when he won the two-year-old leg of this event last year. He’s had a freshen-up and his close second to The Thinking Man at Bunbury on Tuesday of last week should have topped him off very well. He needed that run.

“He started from the back line and worked his way to the one-out, one-back spot before running home well. This was the first time that he had finished off a race from a sit. I don’t think that he has been beaten when he has set the pace.”

Rocknroll Whitby was favourite at 10/9 when he started from barrier three, raced three wide early and took the lead after 600m before winning by a length from Destined To Rule in the two-year-old leg of the Sales Classic last April.

Rocknroll Whitby is out of former star mare Party Date (trained and driven by Aiden Warwick) who earned $256,003 from 18 wins and 27 placings from 111 starts. All five of Party Date’s foals to have raced have been winners --- Speed Date, Bettor Party (93 starts for 18 wins, 27 placings and $173,972), Prince of Whitby, Rocknroll Whitby (15 starts for four wins, five placings and $80,125) and Partytime Whitby.

Two-year-old Partytime Whitby, trained and driven by Suvaljko, made a successful debut when she started at 9/1 and led from the No. 3 barrier before beating Beach Goddess by a length at Gloucester Park last Saturday night.

Young trainer-reinsman Aiden de Campo is pleased with the progress of Blitz Tanzania and said that the gelding was capable of a strong showing.

Blitz Tanzania, who notched his second win from five starts when he led from the No. 1 barrier and defeated Fanci A Dance over 2100m at Bunbury on Tuesday of last week, will start from the inside of the back line on Friday night.

“That’s a good draw at Gloucester Park, but Blitz Tanzania is quite a big horse and I would have preferred a front-line draw where he could have led,” de Campo said. “Now it looks like we’ll be sitting behind the leader. Rocknroll Whitby is likely to lead and should give us a good cart into the race.

“Blitz Tanzania was probably a bit underdone going into last week’s race and I’ve really cranked him up over the past week. He should be spot-on for Friday and if he gets the right run he should go pretty close in quite an even race.”

Brayden Green, who will drive Navy Blues for Boyanup trainer Justin Prentice, said that the gelding was going “really good” and was capable of surprising.

Green drove Navy Blues when he led early and then took a sit before finishing strongly and sprinting over the final quarter in 27.3sec. to win from Hillview Jet over 2185m at Pinjarra three Mondays ago.

“Navy Blues works as good as anything at Justin’s,” Green said. “He works with horses of the calibre of Better Reward and Major Reality and he keeps up with them, no matter who he works with. But he doesn’t quite put it into his races. If he gets the right trip he’s definitely a winning chance. He worked very well this morning (Tuesday).”

Soho Wall Street, trained at Northam by Glenn Elliott, is nicely drawn at barrier two on the front line, and with Chris Lewis in the sulky, he will have many admirers after racing 21 times for five wins and nine placings. He led from the No. 2 barrier two starts ago when he scored by four lengths from Tommy Be Good at Gloucester Park.

Capel trainer Andrew de Campo will be producing the smart gelding Sportsnight first-up from barrier three. Sportsnight has not appeared since he notched his fifth win from 20 starts when he lead and beat Heez Down To Earth over 2100m at Bunbury on December 15. He has also finished second seven times.  

GPTV speaks to Callan Suvaljko   

by Ken Casellas | GPTV

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