Fitter Rokkii ready for Futurity challenge

Trainer David Hayes
David Hayes is banking on improved fitness levels for He’s Our Rokkii ahead of the Futurity Stakes.

David Hayes is not conceding the Futurity Stakes to Black Heart Bart, giving He’s Our Rokkii a good chance against him at Caulfield.

Hayes and his Lindsay Park co-trainers, his son Ben and nephew Tom Dabernig, decided taking on Black Heart Bart a better option than meeting Winx in the Chipping Norton Stakes at Randwick.

Black Heart Bart is at $1.80 for Saturday’s Group One race at Caulfield but Hayes is banking on He’s Our Rokkii’s improved fitness to give the gelding his chance to topple the favourite.

He’s Our Rokkii finished eighth behind Black Heart Bart in the C F Orr Stakes at Caulfield on February 11, his first try at weight-for-age.

He showed his liking for the Caulfield circuit last spring, capturing the Toorak Handicap before finishing 10th in the Cantala Stakes at Flemington on the opening day of the Melbourne Cup carnival.

“I think he’s going to run well on Saturday,” Hayes said.

“We’ve all got great respect for Black Heart Bart but last start we were a bit underdone.

“He was ridden back but I loved his acceleration until he knocked up.

“He’s got a good barrier and will grab the race by the scruff of the neck.”

Hayes is expecting the smaller field and a good barrier will allow He’s Our Rokkii to be ridden closer to the pace.

“The small field will suit and he should be put into the race this week,” Hayes said.

“He’s a fitter horse and we all know he’s pretty good at Caulfield and he’s a Group One winner.”

Lindsay Park will also be represented by Fast ‘N’ Rocking in the Futurity.

It will be the fifth time in as many years Fast ‘N’ Rocking has lined up on Blue Diamond Stakes day.

He ran second in the Blue Diamond in 2013, fourth in the Zeditave Stakes in 2014, third in the Oakleigh Plate two years ago and 10th in that race last year.

The gelding has a Group One placing over Saturday’s trip when third to Bon Aurum in the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes last autumn.

Fast ‘N’ Rocking is the $41 outsider in Saturday’s race with He’s Our Rokkii rated a $14 chance.

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