The Bonds and reinsman Ryan Warwick are proving an all-conquering combination. Photo by Paceway Photos.
Greg and Skye Bond, celebrating their century of winners this season when they landed a double at Pinjarra on Monday afternoon, repeated the dose with a double at Gloucester Park on Tuesday evening. And they should give punters a flying start by winning the opening event, the TABtouch Pace for three-year-olds at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
The Forrestdale master trainers will be pinning their hopes on Rock Diamonds, who is unbeaten at his first seven starts in Western Australia.
The Bonds and reinsman Ryan Warwick are proving an all-conquering combination and they are on top of the national trainers’ and drivers’ premiership tables.
An indication of the ability of Rock Diamond, a colt by Rocknroll Hanover who finished third at his only start in New Zealand, is that he has won his seven races in WA by a combined total of 64.7 metres --- an average winning margin of 9.14m.
Rock Diamonds warmed up for Friday night’s assignment with an impressive victory at Pinjarra on Monday when he started from the back line, settled at the rear and then charged forward to move into the breeze before surging to the front 400m from home on his way to a four-length victory over Hindu Kumara, rating 1.58.6 over 2692m.
Rock Diamonds is closely related to a former star from the Bond stables in Ohokas Bondy, who amassed $388,148 from 22 wins and nine placings from 44 starts. Among his victories were The Golden Slipper in 2010, the Caduceus Club Classic, the Western Gateway Pace and Battle of Bunbury in 2011 and the Nights of Thunder, the Four-Year-Old Classic at Pinjarra and the WA Triple Crown in 2012.
Ohokas Bondy’s dam Asabella is the mother of Dancing Diamonds, the dam of Rock Diamonds. Ohokas Bondy’s half-brother Code Red won 12 races, six of them for trainer Gary Hall sen., including the 3309m Marathon Handicap at Gloucester Park in August 2012.
Rock Diamonds certainly will not have things all his own way on Friday night when he will rise considerably in class, with his rivals including smart last-start winners in Im Rockaria, Maczaffair and Allmightyjoelouis and talented pacers El Barcelona and Major Pocket.
Gary Hall jun. has given punters a strong lead by opting to drive the Michael Brennan-trained Im Rockaria in preference to El Barcelona, trained by his father Gary Hall sen. and the winner at four of his nine starts.
“Im Rockaria can beat Rock Diamonds,” declared Hall jun., who drove Im Rockaria to an effortless all-the-way win by more than seven lengths from Bethany Aitch over 2285m at Albany on New Year’s Eve.
“He led from barrier one at Albany, which is not a good draw on that track,” said Hall who was driving there for only the second time in his illustrious career.
Im Rockaria, the winner of six of his ten starts, will be strongly fancied from the prized No. 1 barrier on Friday night.
The Bonds and Warwick, apart from heading the national lists, hold commanding leads in the Statewide premierships. The Bonds have prepared 102 winners from 347 starters this season and lead from Gary Hall sen. (47 winners from 214 starters) and Warwick has had 245 drives for 84 winners and leads from Chris Lewis (70 wins from 393 drives) and Gary Hall jun. (66 wins from 289 starts).