Trainer Leanne Elliot is now eyeing Group One targets with consistent galloper Rock On Wood (NZ) (Redwood) after his win in the John Turkington LTD/ Wai Pine Logging Bulls Country Cup (1400m) at Awapuni on Saturday.
The son of Redwood was victorious in the race last year and was once again piloted by Elliot’s son Ryan, who forewent the Premier day at Pukekohe to retain the ride on the family favourite.
“It was a very good run on Saturday, he went well,” Elliot said. “It was nice that Ryan came down to ride him, he is pretty committed to him.”
Rock On Wood finished runner-up to Hypnos in the Gr.3 Red Badge Spring Sprint (1400m) at Hastings first-up and Elliot was buoyed by the Roger James and Robert Wellwood-trained gelding’s subsequent victory in the Gr.2 Coupland’s Bakeries Mile (1600m).
“It was a good run for Hypnos and it was good to see him win down south,” Elliot said.
Elliot noted her charge is more forward this year compared to last season and she will now head south to try and snare Group One honours in the Rydges Wellington Captain Cook Stakes (1600m) on Saturday-week.
“He has had two races under his belt now and this time last year he had just had the one, so he is a little more forward,” she said.
“I am planning on going to the Captain Cook at Wellington on December 5 with him, and then the Thorndon Mile (Gr.1, 1600m) in January.