Stepping up to 1400m at her third run this time in, Rockolicious contested Race 4 on the program, the TAB.com.au Handicap (1400m), and after jumping nicely from barrier one, Shinn allowed her to settle in great position on the fence behind the early leader Lani Girl.
Shinn was forced to use the 4yo up a little early to allow her to take advantage of her inside gate, which proved to be a smart move, as the leader moved two off the rail at the 800m mark, allowing Rockolicious to slip up the inside rail to share the lead.
As they approached the turn, Shinn gave the mare a little more rein and she took full advantage of the inside running rail rounding the turn, while her well fancied rivals ended up going wide.
Rockolicious kicked at the top of the straight and was ridden superbly to the line by Shinn to record an impressive 0.5L victory over Lucky Can Be, who finished second, with a further 0.1L away to Something Secret in third place.
Trainer Chris Waller was impressed with the mare’s effort, especially for her patient owners.
“Shes a handy mare and the owners have been nice and patient,” Waller said.
“She got beat last start and its good to see her bounce back to winning form.”
“It’s a great time of year to take them through their grades and she’ll now step up to Saturday class.”
Today’s victory was win number two for Rockolicious after scoring her debut victory at Warwick Farm two starts ago when resuming from a spell.
Blake Shinn has been aboard for each of the mare’s wins, both on heavy tracks at Warwick Farm, and was full of praise for the improving daughter of Fastnet Rock.
“She’s well bred, she’s got a big frame on her and she’s just starting to mature,” Shinn said.
“She’s very lightly raced and I think the best is yet to come.”
Rockolicious was a beaten favourite at her last start over 1200m at Warwick Farm, after winning first-up over 1300m, and the step up to 1400m today was always going to suit the mare.
“I certainly believe she’s going to get better once she gets out over more distance,” Shinn said.
“There was a little pressure early but I was able to just bide my time and let her get comfortable and use that inside barrier to our advantage.”
“She did a great job today.”
Rockolicious was syndicated by Darren Dance for Australian Thoroughbred Bloodstock and has earned $61,895 in prizemoney from four starts, which includes two wins and a third placing.
The manner in which Rockolicious scored today suggests many more wins are in store.
We certainly hope so!