Pike aims to scoop the car­ni­val pool

The Southland Times - - RACING - NZ Rac­ing Desk

Cam­bridge trainer Tony Pike is plot­ting a triple Group One dip into the cen­tral dis­tricts early next sea­son.

He has his sights set on the Hawke’s Bay car­ni­val with his New Zealand Derby win­ner Rangipo, who is likely to be sup­ported by a num­ber of younger sta­ble­mates.

‘‘We’ll be en­ter­ing Rangipo for all three of the Group Ones at Hast­ings,’’ Pike said. ‘‘He’s start­ing to breeze up now and hope­fully he will come up quickly enough and at this stage I am very happy with him. As long as he pro­gresses well, he’ll be go­ing for the first two and ide­ally all three.’’

Rangipo won three times at Group Two level be­fore he beat What’s The Story and the Pike­trained Raghu in the Derby, but was then un­placed in his Aus­tralian de­but at Doomben.

He was put aside un­til last spring and was again turned out af­ter twice fin­ish­ing out of the money in Mel­bourne. Rangipo re­turned in much im­proved form in the au­tumn for a first-up third in the Gr.3 Dar­ley Plate and fin­ished sixth in the Gr.2 Ja­pan/ New Zealand In­ter­na­tional Tro­phy.

‘‘We’ve had a few is­sues with him, but he seems to be com­ing back to it nicely now,’’ Pike said. ‘‘We’ll give him a cou­ple of jumpouts and prob­a­bly a bar­rier trial be­fore Hawke’s Bay.’’

The sta­ble is blessed with a num­ber of smart ris­ing three-yearold prospects, among them the un­beaten pair of Bos­to­nian and Sa­cred Rebel, Hauss­mann, Aim Smart, Fel­ton Road and Uj­jayyi.

‘‘De­pend­ing how quickly they come up, they will be tar­geted to­ward Hast­ings,’’ Pike said. ‘‘We’ve got a num­ber of nice types and while it would be great to split them up, there is a set pat­tern on the way to the bet­ter races. ‘‘

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