An easy spin around in a barrier trial had jockey Tye Angland bullish about Marenostro’s chances at Rosehill on Saturday and he was justified when the honest gelding posted an upset first-up win.
Most expected Marenostro’s stablemate Rockolicious to salute in the Neville Begg Handicap (1400m).
Angland, who rode the five-year-old to successive city wins last winter, was reacquainted with Marenostro in a recent trial and was surprised by how spritely he felt.
“I was confident coming into the race, he trialled really well on a softish track but he still has good form on good tracks,’’ Angland said.
“He felt he was back on the fresh legs he showed a few preps back.’’
The jockey’s pre-race confidence was only amplified when Marenostro ($7) landed in a perfect trail behind a stronger than expected tempo.
He hit the lead early in the straight and was strong on the line holding a 1-3/4 length margin on Ryker ($6) and a similar gap to Spy Decoder ($6.50) with Rockolicious ($2.90 fav) missing the place.
“With the speed from out wide and a few kicking up on the fence it created more speed and I was able to slot in from an awkward gate,’’ he said.
Marenostro was the third winner on the day for the Chris Waller stable and his racing manager Charlie Duckworth said he was expected to run well fresh as he had done in the past.
“The thing I thought was really impressive was he’s known as a wet tracker but this was a Good 3 so he’s put that myth to bed,’’ Duckworth said.
“We’ve tried stepping him up over ground but it turns out he’s better suited to these slightly shorter trips.’’
Duckworth couldn’t make any excuses on face value for Rockolicious but warned against dropping off her for Saturday’s defeat.
“There was an early fight for the lead and I think that didn’t really help her,’’ he said.
“But she had a clear run and a good go at them she probably wasn’t good enough on the day.’’ – The Daily Telegraph