Patrickthepiranha is Ready

17 October 2019 | Ken Casellas
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Up-and-coming star Patrickthepiranha is fit and ready for a strong showing at his first appearance for 119 days when he contests the Book Your Christmas Party Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night.

Ace trainer Colin Brown is looking forward keenly to driving the WA-bred gelding, who is favourably drawn at barrier three on the front line in the 2130m event. And he predicts he will prove very hard to beat in his clash with outstanding five-year-old Mighty Conqueror.

“The plan will be to go forward,” Brown said. “He’s got really good gate speed and is fresh. He’ll be very keen on the gate, I would suggest. So, we’ll go forward and play it by ear. He will be hard to beat. His heart rate after his track workouts has been lower than Its Rock And Roll’s heart rate.”

Brown produced Its Rock And Roll in splendid condition for the four-year-old’s return to racing after a spell when the gelding gave a stylish frontrunning display to score an easy win at a 1.58.8 rate over 2536m at Gloucester Park on Tuesday afternoon. It was an enjoyable 61st birthday present for the outstanding horseman.

Patrickthepirhana and Its Rock And Roll are firmly on target for the $50,000 Four-Year-Old Championship on November 15, the $125,000 Four-Year-Old Classic on November 29 and the $200,000 Golden Nugget on December 13.

“Patrickthepirhana had a bit longer off than Its Rock And Roll, about two weeks,” Brown said. “But he’s done at least as much (this preparation) as Its Rock And Roll. They have been working with Eden Franco and Patrick has done plenty of miles. The big four-year-old races are only a month away, so both horses need to have a reasonable level of fitness.”

Patrickthepirhana has won at ten of his 18 starts for stakes of $172,573. His victories include three three-year-old feature events earlier this year --- the Caduceus Club Classic, the Sales Classic and the Westbred Classic. He has been driven in all 18 races by Dylan Egerton-Green, who will drive his own nomination, six-year-old Tyler Brett, from barrier six in Friday night’s event.

Brown said he was looking forward to driving Patrickthepirhana for the first time in a race --- “mainly to see for myself where he’s at,” he explained. “Dylan gives me good feedback, but there’s nothing like sitting behind yourself to make sure everything is ticketty-boo.

“There’s not a lot between Patrickthepirhana and Its Rock And Roll, but Patrick is more versatile. He had a lot more runs on the board as a three-year-old (nine wins from 15 starts) compared with Its Rock And Roll (12 starts for no wins and eight placings as a three-year-old).” As two-year-olds Patrickthepirhana raced three times for one win and one placing, while Its Roc k And Roll had 11 starts for four wins and five placings.

The clash between Patrickthepirhana and Mighty Conqueror should provide plenty of fireworks. Mighty Conqueror, trained by Greg and Skye Bond, has outstanding potential and has won at 13 of his 19 starts. Regular reinsman Ryan Warwick is serving a 14-day suspension and Chris Lewis will drive Mighty Conqueror from out wide at barrier seven.  

Mighty Conqueror gave an excellent performance in a 2503m standing-start event last Friday night when, in a desperate attempt to gain an early ascendancy over his chief rival Space Junk, he broke into a gallop 150m after the start. He lost several lengths and was a long way behind the leaders in tenth position after a lap before surging forward to work hard in the breeze. He battled on with grim determination.

That was Mighty Conqueror’s second appearance after a spell and followed an impressive win from 40m in a 2631m stand at Pinjarra 11 days earlier.

Brown is hoping for better luck with Patrickthepirhana and Its Rock And Roll in the coming months after losing richly-talented six-year-old Maxentius about five weeks ago when he died during a trial at Byford.

The New South Wales-bred Maxentius, who had raced 19 times for Brown for six wins and six placings for a career record of 45 starts for 13 wins, 12 placings and $113,771 in stakes, was being set for the Fremantle and WA Pacing Cups in the summer.

“We had spelled him for six months and had been in work for four months,” Brown said. “He was going sensationally, and we were getting him ready for the Cups.”