|Rare Fox continued his solid recent form with a very strong performance on Premier raceday at Ellerslie last Saturday.
Lining up in the R70 2100 metre event, Rare Fox stormed home from amongst the tailenders on the turn to finish second, missing the major prize by just half a length. Arguably the draw was the pivotal factor, the well backed winner Tariq box seated throughout whilst the Cleland/Hood stable runner was positioned last throughout most of the journey as a result of his outside barrier draw.
The 5 year old son of Desert Fox has been a model of consistency in recent times; Saturday’s second placing was his fourth such placing from his past five outings.
To the innocent observer he showed some new capabilities on Saturday, firstly being ridden against his established pattern and secondly handling the good track with aplomb. However talk to any of the Sir James Lodge team and there were no surprises on either count. “We have always felt as the horse rises in distance, settling him a bit further back then running on will bring his best performances” remarked senior trainer Martin Cleland. “In addition we have no doubt he is better on good to dead tracks, so his effort came as no shock to us.”
The winner on Saturday is a well bred son of Rock of Gibraltar who cost $500,000 as a yearling. Rare Fox or “Foxy” as he is affectionately known cost just $8,000 as a yearling, the half length between the two belying the difference in price tags. He has now finished in the first four placings in 14 of his 18 appearances, a more genuine horse you could not hope for.
His next assignment is likely to be at Tauranga on the 18th of October, his performance there will dictate where he proceeds to thereafter.