Ken Casellas | Photo: Gloucester Park Harness Racing
Robbie Rocket, described by Byford trainer Ron Huston as a versatile pacer, but not overly tough, is an excellent frontrunner, who proved his value as a smart sit-sprinter when he won the www.horseandhound.com.sau Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
“He is only small, but he tries his heart out,” said Huston. “Tonight, he had a decent draw (inside of the back line) and had a bit of luck in running.
“He has raced against good horses from day one, horses like Lavra Joe, Mighty Ronaldo and Jumpingjackmac, and as a young horse he ran seconds behind Lavra Joe and Jumpingjackmac, as well as finishing third behind Mighty Ronaldo in the Golden Slipper.
“He was probably just as good as any of them as a two-year-old. But they have gone on, while he has got no better as a three and four-year-old. There is a great crop of four-year-olds this year who will be fighting for places in the fields to contest the rich feature events for four-year-olds late this year.
“Robbie Rocket won’t be one of them. He is just a good, honest Friday night horse. We are realistic of what he can do and what he can’t do.”
Robbie Rocket was the $5.30 second favourite on Friday night when he raced in fifth place, three back on the pegs, while Longreach Bay ($6.50) set the pace. Mitch Miller was able to ease Robbie Rocket off the pegs 300m from home and the gelding went four wide on the home turn and finished strongly to hit the front 45m from the post and win by just over a length from $12 chance Hillview Bondi, who raced in the breeze before taking the lead with 100m to travel.
Robbie Rocket, who rated 1.56.9 over the 2130m journey, was bred and is owned by Tasmanian Patrick O’Boyle, who owned the Follow The Stars gelding’s dam Elite Angel.
Elite Angel was trained by Huston for her first 54 starts for 12 wins, 14 placings and about $125,000 in prizemoney. Robbie Rocket now has earned $95,634 from nine wins and 16 placings from42 starts.