Star reinsman Chris Voak celebrated his 33rd birthday on Sunday in the afterglow of landing a double in the opening two events at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
He was seen at his dashing best in scoring impressive victories with Sugar Street and Fanci A Dance, pacers owned and trained by Barry Howlett, and then notched his 90th win for the season when successful with the Shane Quadrio-trained Shellna at Northam on Saturday night.
Sugar Street was the $2.30 favourite from the inside of the back line in the opening event on Friday night, the 2536m Westside Auto Pace, and Voak asserted his authority when he urged the Bettors Delight three-year-old colt forward in the first lap to take the lead after a lap.
The New Zealand-bred Sugar Street was not extended as he sprinted over the final quarters in 28.2sec. and 27.7sec. to beat the early leader Powerplay ($9) by three lengths at a 1.57.4 rate, with $12 chance Arma Einstein running on solidly to be third. Lil Happy Fella, a stablemate of the winner, caught the eye when he finished powerfully from tenth and last at the bell to be fourth.
This improved Sugar Street’s record to 20 starts for five wins, nine placings and $62,684 in stakes, and the colt looks set for a bright career. As a two-year-old Sugar Street had 12 starts for two wins and five seconds when he was hampered by injury.
“He was never fully fit as a two-year-old,” said Howlett. “He suffered from bruising in a foot, which needed treatment. And with the setbacks we never had him really hardened.
“He is a nice little horse who is tough, and you’ve got to have that toughness. Tonight, Chris didn’t pull the plugs and he said that Sugar Street was cruising at the finish.”
Sugar Street, who finished third behind Mighty Ronaldo and Jumpingjackmac in the WA Derby in late April this year, should prove to be a worthy rival for those two top-flight pacers, as well as the brilliant Lavra Joe in the rich feature events for four-year-olds early next year.