Co-trainer Graeme Rogerson admits he still hasn’t worked out whether enigmatic three-year-old Mascarpone has a sprinting or staying future ahead of him, but what he does know is that he has an exciting prospect on his hands whichever way the cards fall.
The Shooting To Win gelding displayed a powerful turn of foot when he came from near last to win the 1400m opening event at Trentham on Saturday although he did give rider Ryan Elliot some concerns as he ducked inwards several times when producing his home straight burst.
It was the second win in succession for Mascarpone, who Team Rogerson has nominated for three Group One events over a variety of distances in the coming months.
“I think he is going to be a really good horse once he learns what racing is all about,” Rogerson said.
“He just does a few things wrong and he is a slow learner, but the raw ability is definitely there.
“You’ve just got to hold him up in his races as he can really sprint and that’s what Ryan did on Saturday.
“I’m not convinced he is a straight out sprinter as I think he could also get a trip, so that’s why we’ve got him nominated for the New Zealand Derby (Gr.1, 2400m) while we’ve also got him in the Levin Classic (Gr.1, 1600m) and the Telegraph (Gr.1, 1200m).
“We’ve got options that also include the Karaka Million 3YO Classic (1600m) at Ellerslie.
“He came back from Wellington early Sunday morning and looks to have travelled well so we will take a look at him over the next few days and then make a plan for him.”
Rogerson was also pleased with the effort of two-year-old filly De La Terre to finish sixth in the Gr.2 Wakefield Challenge Stakes (1100m) after having her chances extinguished when interfered with at the start.
“I thought she did a good job as she got knocked over when they jumped and got too far back,” he said.
“She made up pretty good ground in the run home and has pulled up well.
“She’s going to the Karaka Million 2YO (1200m) at Ellerslie next.”
Rogerson reported that De La Terre’s older sister and stablemate, Aalaalune had come through her recent Te Rapa victory well and would tackle the Gr.3 Lawnmaster Eulogy Stakes (1600m) at Awapuni this coming weekend before heading to Ellerslie for the Gr.2 Ladies Mile (1600m) at Ellerslie on Boxing Day.
Aalaalune will be accompanied to Awapuni by Gr.1 Sistema Railway (1200m) candidate Mr Universe who will tackle an open 1200m contest in preparation for Ellerslie’s New Year’s Day feature.