Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators
New Zealand-bred pacer Infatuation bounced back to his best form with a splendid victory in the 2130m Intersport Slater Gartrell Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night, with star reinsman Ryan Warwick saying that the five-year-old has been flying under the radar.
“He doesn’t get the credit he deserves,” said Warwick. “He is a quiet achiever.”
Infatuation, prepared by leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond, was a $5.70 chance from barrier five, and he showed excellent fighting qualities to win by more than two lengths from the pacemaker Thereugo ($16), with the $2.25 favourite The Kraken two lengths farther back in third place.
Thereugo resisted a strong early challenge from The Kraken, and the lead time was a slick 35.6sec. Infatuation settled down in fifth position in the one-wide line, several lengths behind the leader. Warwick sent Infatuation forward, three wide, 650m from home and the gelding forged to the front with 450m to travel.
“He was one-one tonight but there was a fair gap between him and the frontrunners,” Warwick said. “And it’s not easy being the pilot horse when you are chasing up.”
This was Infatuation’s twelfth win from 29 starts and took his earnings to $86,011. After a win and three seconds from four New Zealand starts, he has raced 25 times in WA for 11 wins and three placings.
He is by American Ideal and is the eighth foal out of the unraced In The Pocket mare Saturation. He is a full-brother to Besotted (70 starts for 17 wins, 22 placings and $302,677) and Rain Man (44 starts for eight wins, 11 placings and $72,967).