Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators
High-priced youngster Tricky Miki impressed when he led and sped over the final 800m in 55.5sec. before holding on to win by a head from the fast-finishing The Miki Taker in the 2130m Retravision Online Pace for three-year-olds at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
Boyanup trainer Justin Prentice was happy with Triki Miki’s performance and said that the gelding would be set for rich classic events, likely to begin with the $50,000 Sales Classic for colts and geldings on February 25 and ending with the $200,000 WA Derby on November 4.
“He’s got a lot of speed and a fair bit of bottom,” said Prentice. “I’m trying to get his gait a hundred per cent right. He is still learning and races in a one-legged spreader. He does get a bit close (to striking a knee), and I think that worries him a bit. However, I expect that he will grow out of that.”
Prentice paid $57,500 for Tricky Miki at the 2020 APG Perth yearling sale, and he races him in partnership with several stable clients.
Tricky Miki, who was having his second start after a spell on Friday night, has already earned $106,603 from three wins and three placings from six starts, with the highlight being his easy win in the group 1 Golden Slipper last July.
Tricky Miki, who finished strongly when a close first-up second to Floe writer a fortnight earlier, was the $1.10 favourite from the No. 1 barrier, and Gary Hall jar took full advantage of the ideal draw. With Tricky Miki able to get away with a slow lead time of 39.9sec. followed by an ambling opening quarter of 31.2sec.
Swing band ($11) raced in the breeze, and he challenged strongly for the lead in the final circuit but was unable to overhaul the pacemaker. It was then left for The Miki Taker ($9) to fly home with a brilliant late burst to finish second, a head from the winner.
The Miki Taker, trained and driven by Aiden de Campo, had raced three back on the pegs in fifth position before unleashing his spectacular late charge. His stablemate Floe writer ($7), an impressive winner of three metropolitan-class events from his previous four starts, enjoyed the one-out, one-back sit, but failed to show up and finished last in the field of six runners.