Ken Casellas | Photo Credit: Hamilton Content Creators
Five-year-old Vespa, an accomplished sit-sprinter in recent months, revealed his versatility when he gave a bold frontrunning display to score a decisive victory in the 2130m Catalano Truck And Equipment Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
Vespa, fourth favourite at $6, was first out from barrier five, and after a lead time of 37.1sec. Shannon Suvaljko was able to get Vespa to coast through the opening quarters of the final mile in 31.7sec. and 29.5sec. before sprinting over the final 400m sections in 28.3sec. and 28.4sec. to win by just over a length from $3.90 second fancy Queen Shenandoah, rating 1.57.1.
“The plan tonight was to come out hard and see what happens,” said trainer Michael Young. “We haven’t used him (out of the gate) for about 15 weeks, and we didn’t know how quick he would come out. He is not just a sit-sprinter, and I think before tonight he had led twice for me for a win and when he was just beaten by Boom Time.”
The New Zealand-bred Vespa thrives on racing and he has had 22 starts in the space of 21 weeks for Young, recording five wins and eight placings for stakes of $67,237. With four wins in New Zealand Vespa has a career record of 53 starts nine wins, 12 placings and stakes of $106,577.
Queen Shenandoah fought on solidly from sixth at the bell to be second to record her third successive placing. She will pay to follow.