Latest News

Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators

New Zealand-bred five-year-old Double Up has flourished as a brilliant sit-sprinter before being seen in the unusual role as a breeze horse in the 2130m Support the Stud That Supports You Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night.

A $4.20 chance from the No. 5 barrier, Double Up settled down in fourth place on the pegs before Deni Roberts eased him out into the one-wide line and into the breeze after a lap when the $2.05 favourite Texas Tiger was setting a modest pace with a slow lead time of 38.4sec. and an opening quarter of a leisurely 31.5sec.

Roberts was content to keep Double Up more than a length behind the pacemaker before she set the American Ideal gelding alight with a sparkling late burst to snatch a thrilling last-stride victory by a nose over Texas Tiger, with the final 400m being covered in 27.3sec.

“Double Up is very fast, but is also a bit tough, too, under his own steam,” said Roberts. “I wasn’t too bothered by going into the breeze when I did. The speed was so slow, and Junior (Gary Hall Jnr) had got away with so much with Texas Tiger already, that if I had stayed back, it would have been impossible to come from behind.

“I knew that Double Up could do it. I didn’t apply pressure because I wanted to turn it into a dash home, knowing that my horse is very fast. So, I was using him as a sit-sprinter from the breeze. He is going to be a very good sniper in Free-For-Alls.”

Roberts has a perfect record in the sulky behind Double Up, having driven the gelding once before — in a heat of the Nights Of Thunder in January this year when he flew home from the rear to beat Bettorstartdreaming, paying $86 on the tote and $126 on the fixed market.

Double Up, prepared by leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, has shone in Western Australia, with his 25 starts in the State producing 12 wins and eight placings for an overall record of 39 starts for 14 wins, 13 placings and $156,794 in prizemoney.