Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators
Lightly-raced four-year-old Alta Louisa maintained her steady rate of improvement when she took full advantage of the No. 1 barrier and relished her pacemaking role on her way to scoring a comfortable victory in the 2130m Simmonds Steel Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
The Justin Prentice-trained mare gave star reinsman Gary Hall jnr an armchair drive as she ambled through the lead time in 39.6sec. and the first three quarters in 31.6sec., 31.4sec. and 29.3sec. before sprinting over the final 400m in 27.4sec.
The $2.04 favourite won by 2m from the $10 second fancy Born To Boogie, who raced wide early before obtaining the sit behind the frontrunner.
The win improved the New Zealand-bred Alta Louisa’s record to 15 starts for eight wins, four placings and stakes of $75,724.
“The barrier draw helps, and she got it nice and easy in front,” said Prentice. “She does only what she has to. She likes to know where the others are, and she sort of waits for them.
“She is versatile and should be okay in the better races for mares in which she can be driven quietly. She has a good turn of foot, and hopefully she will measure up in the major races for mares. She hasn’t had a lot of racing, and she needs some more education and grounding work.”