Ace trainers Greg and Skye Bond produced Lawrence in fine fettle for his first-up appearance in the 2130m Big Brother On Seven Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
The New Zealand-bred five-year-old was a $2 favourite who began well from barrier No. 4 to dash to the front 200m after the start and then set a solid pace before winning convincingly from stablemate Poisedtopounce ($5) and Boom Time ($5) at a 1.56.5 rate.
After having 28 starts in New Zealand for five wins and 11 placings, Lawrence has raced only six times in Western Australia for four wins and two seconds.
“Lawrence and Glenledi Chief will go to the Easter Cup,” said star reinsman Ryan Warwick. “They’ve both got good ability and deserve a chance to run in the Easter Cup.”
The $50,000 Easter Cup is a stand over 2902m and will be run at Gloucester Park next Friday afternoon.
Lawrence has made one appearance in a stand in WA when he had a tough run in the breeze and finished a one-length second to Triroyale Brigade over 2503m at Gloucester Park last December.
He raced in eight standing-start events in New Zealand for two seconds, four fourths, an eighth and a tenth placing. His seconds were over 2700m at Gore in December 2019 and over 2600m at Wyndham in January 2020.
He started well off the front at Gore, led after 100m and remained in front for the first 1200m before taking the trail behind the favourite Bettathanfast. The final 400m was covered in 28.4sec. and Lawrence finished determinedly to be a half-neck second to Bettathanfast.
In the race on the grass track at Wyndham, Lawrence started off the 10m mark and was favourite. He settled in eighth position and was sixth in the one-out, one-back spot at the bell before starting a three-wide move 600m from home. He went seven wide on the home turn and charged home to finish second to the $25 pacemaker I’mallaboutthebase, who sprinted over the final 400m in 28.6sec.
Glenledi Chief is unbeaten in four appearances for the Bond stable in WA all in stands, three at Narrogin and one at Pinjarra. He has yet to appear at Gloucester Park. His 22 New Zealand starts produced three wins and six placings. He raced in five stands for two thirds over 2600m, a fourth over 2600m and a sixth and an eighth.
By Ken Casellas