By Ray Hickson
With four seconds from eight starts it appears the career of Rancho Notorious is mirroring that of his stablemate River Bird and trainer Jason Coyle certainly hopes so.
River Bird made it to start 11 before breaking through but then rushed through the grades winning three of her next five starts.
Coyle can see parallels between the two and hopes Rancho Notorious can begin his coming of age a little sooner in the Hungerford Mill Wines Plate (1300m) at Newcastle on Thursday.
“He's much the same as River Bird, very physically immature, and I say to the owners he's still six months away and still has furnishing to do,’’ Coyle said.
“As long as he stays sound and continues racing well I think he has a nice metropolitan future.’’
The Warwick Farm trainer gave an indication of his opinion of the now four-year-old when he threw him in the deep end against The Autumn Sun in the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes at the end of last preparation.
He ran fifth of six but collected just under $10,000 for his trouble and was gelded during his break.
“He was tested way above his pay grade last preparation due to the fact I had a good opinion of him and that race ended up with a small field,’’ Coyle said.
“He was tipped out a colt, that's another reason you put them in stakes races as a colt to see where you're at.
“His main aim now is to win prizemoney and races, and that's a matter of working through his grades. If he is going to go up to another level of racing I dare say it will be post Christmas.’’
Rancho Notorious resumed as a gelding with an eye-catching second at Warwick Farm two weeks ago in a race that was too short and wasn’t run to suit him.
He clocked the fastest last 600m in the 1100m sprint in 34.19 (Punter's Intelligence) which was about a length and a half faster than anything else in the race.
“Over an unsuitable distance and the way the race was run he was very good,’’ Coyle said.
“He's always given me the idea that seven or eight furlongs will be his go. There's no reason he shouldn't run well off the back of his first-up run.
“Glen Boss got off first-up and said once he found a backside and relaxed he gave the feel of a horse that would appreciate a bit further.’’
Rancho Notorious was the $3 favourite with TAB on Wednesday.
Rancho Notorious runs second at Warwick Farm on July 31
Meanwhile, Coyle said it’s back to the drawing board with the talented Mo’s Crown after his shock defeat first-up at Kembla Grange last week.
Plans for the three-year-old didn’t include a first-up defeat so Coyle will head either to a Hawkesbury maiden next week or a Warwick Farm race a week later to get him back on track.
“I thought he did too much work once he'd blown the start in a race that was run a second quicker than the other 1000m race,’’ he said.
“As it panned out the horses that were at the back had the last crack at the horses that did too much up front.
“It was a genuine forgive run. He might be better with a sit and trying to attack them rather than hitting the front early and doing all the bullocking work.’’