Whittaker likely to suit USA racing

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Whittaker, who won a Menangle mile on Tuesday in a career best 1:52.9 for the Sydney arm of the Mark Jones stable, is ultimately likely to follow stablemate Delightful Memphis to North America.

“I have no real immediate plans for him, but I am looking at moving him onto America, where he’ll do a great job,” Mark said.

Whittaker, shown winnng at Addington in July, 2016, in the hands of Sam Ottley.

Whittaker, a Sportswriter entire, aptly re-named by Gold Coast owner Greg Brodie after the later Sydney turf writer Bill Whittaker, is all but a six-figure winner.

Tuesday’s win in a moderate $7500 pace lifted Whittaker’s earnings to $99,758 in Australian dollars.

The lightly-raced 4YO has won most of it this term, after leaving Canterbury after three spring starts.

He’s racked up seven wins and four placings in 19 starts at four, for $74,998.

Whittaker appreciated a sit with cover on Tuesday and sprinted clear for driver KerryAnn Turner to beat Overlap by 4.4 metres.

Back in February, he won the Gr. 3 Paleface Adios Stakes at Menangle in 1:53.9, ensuring a start in the Gr. 1 Chariots Of Fire a week later.

Whittaker ran a creditable fourth in the Chariots as Jilliby Kung Fu held Let It Ride and Atomic Red in a quick 1:48.8.

Whittaker’s career record now stands at 10 wins and eight placings in 29 starts.


Meanwhile, stablemate and 2016 Gr. 1 Cambridge Harness Jewels 4YO-winning mare Rocker Band has a booking to top sire Bettor’s Delight.

Rocker Band held up early in the run home, battled away for fifth to Miss Riviera Belle in last Saturday night’s Gr. 3 Club Menangle Frith Stakes at Menangle, won in 1:52.1.

“She will race in the new mares series at Menangle but with her booking into Bettor’s Delight her form will determine how long she races on for,” Mark said.

Rocker Band, a 6YO daughter of Rocknroll Hanover and 2005 New Zealand Cup-winning mare Mainland Banner, will have plenty going for her at stud.

She has a 1:52.1 winning mile mark and has won 12 of 51 career starts for $333,974.

Rocker Band has yet to win in 10 Australian starts this season, but has placed three times, including a third in the Gr.1 $200,000 Ladyship Mile at Menangle in Feburary, won by Carlas Pixel in 1:49.5.

She preceeded her Ladyship run with a third behind Carlas Pixel and Amaretto in the Gr. 3 Canadian Club Robin Dundee Stakes at Menangle, won in 1:51.7.

Last year, she also had Gr. 1 glory in Australia in the $100,000 Alabar Ladyship Cup at Melton, beating A Piccadilly Princess in her career best 1:52.1 mile rate over the 1720m.

Rocker Band also had a Gr.1 second to Dream About Me in the 2016 Queen Of Hearts at Auckland on her record.