Rocker Band wins sharp Auckland workout

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Classy Overport Lodge mare Rocker Band will be looking to end an unplaced run of four previous Auckland starts in the $20,000 Charles Roberts NISBA Stakes Mare Pace on Friday nihgt.

Rocker Band dispelled any thoughts she isn’t as comfortable right-handed at Alexandra Park with a smart workout win at Auckland last Saturday, February 27.

Rocker Band, and Samantha Ottley, looking for further success at Auckland this Friday. Photo: Bruce Stewart, Southland Harness

Rocker Band, and Samantha Ottley, looking for success at Auckland this Friday. Photo: Bruce Stewart, Southland Harness

“Mango (Brent Mangos) was rapt the way she trialled,” said trainer Mark Jones.

Rocker Band over-raced when beaten into third in the Group Two Premier Mares Championship at Addington on February 12 but was relaxed three and four back on the markers in last Saturday’s C3 and faster heat.

She sprinted up on the home turn to head top northerner Hughie Green early in the run home.

The Rocknroll Hanover-Mainland Banner mare lengthened out to beat Hughie Green by a length in a useful 2:43.5 (mobile 2200m), a mile rate of 1:59.5.

The leaders had the speed on over their last 800m in 56.6s and final 400m in 26.5s.

Samantha Ottley, Rocker Band’s driver this term, travels north to continue her successful assocation on Friday night, and will also rein stablemate Real Torque in the Pascoes The Jewellers Northern Oaks.

Rocker Band is also scheduled to take in the Listed $40,000 Magness Benrow Northern Mares Classic (mobile 2200m) at Auckland on March 11.

“All going well, she’ll then fly back for the Southern Belle Final the following week (Winton mobile 1609m, March 19, then the NZ Breeders Stakes at Addington two weeks after that,” Mark said.

After the Group One $100,000 Breeders Stakes at Addington (mobile 2600m) on April 1, Rocker Band will be freshened and aimed at the $150,000 Harness Jewels 4YO Diamond at Cambridge on June 4.

Her Jewels prospects have been enhanced with the top two seeds, The Orange Agent (injured and requiring three months out) and Fight For Glory (retired after finishing unplaced in last Sunday’s Ladyship Stakes at Menangle), to come out of the Jewels.

However, countering those pending withdrawals is acceptance of an Australian inviation to former NZ 4YO mare, Arms Of An Angel.

Arms Of An Angel, who has taken a 1:50.3 winning mile mark, furthered her sensational mile record at Menangle for trainer Shane Tritton with her third to Have Faith In Me and Lennytheshark in last Sunday’s 1:47.5 $A750,000 SEW Eurodrive Miracle Mile.