Jeronimo Joe comes into Saturday night’s Gold Crown Heats (1,730 metres) at the Bathurst Paceway having made a big impression on trainer Rickie Alchin in the space of just two starts.
The Roll With Joe x Shebas Rocket gelding has claimed a second place and a victory from his two career starts, venturing to Bathurst with excellent form on his side.
In his Newcastle victory Jeronimo Joe didn’t even get the opportunity to showcase his full potential after being blocked for a run behind the leader coming into the home straight.
Once he found the clear with a shift to the outside Alchin’s runner showed a burst of speed to take the win.
Now he’ll aim to replicate that finishing pace against a tougher field in the first of Saturday night’s crown heats.
Alchin said Jeronimo Joe has learning a lot from his short amount of race time to date.
“I’m really happy with him. He’s becoming a really good racehorse. When he won his last race at Newcastle he did it easily and has improved in his work since then,” he said.
“When I got him I didn’t really have any specific goals for him … [but] he was going so well that while we were originally going to give him a spell we decided to press on.
“Dennis Day’s horse [Harry Day] was the one who beat my horse at Goulburn in his first race but we took a lot of ground off him in the run to the end. This heat looks like a fairly even field though I’d say he’s the one to beat.”
Harry Day will start Saturday’s heat from gate six while Alchin’s contender has a tricky start going out second widest on the back row.
Chris Frisby’s Uncle Ryan starts on the inside of Jeronimo Joe
Alchin believes his runner’s starting spot is not such a bad thing.
“I’m happy with the draw. If the horse I’m following out [Amanda Turnbull’s War Dan Star] gets off to a good start then I can get myself into the running line,” he said.
“My horse probably lacks a little bit of high speed, even though he’s so far shown that he’s got a bit of a turn of foot.
“He’s probably tougher than he is quicker. If the race is run at a good tempo then there’s a chance that he could run over the top of them.”
Beyond the Gold Crown Carnival Alchin is looking ahead at the NSW Breeders Challenge series, depending on how Jeronimo Joe pulls up from his Bathurst expedition.
The first of Saturday night’s Gold Crown heats gets underway from 7.45pm.