Rommel, lived up to his famous military namesake with a fighting win in the Group 2 WA Guineas at Ascot yesterday.
The colt beat unbeaten boom galloper Disposition in a tough 1600m race, reversing the result in the Fairetha Stakes (1400m) on November 8.
Neville Parnham declared Rommel as being a “potential good miler” as a two year old last year.
However Rommel’s first three runs back, in this preparation, were only ordinary. “I have ramped up his work in recent weeks. Although you cannot be over confident in such a race I did expect him to run well after drawing a good barrier,” Parnham said.
That factor, plus the extra 200m distance and the fast pace set by Furious Dane all contributed to Rommel’s success.
Jockey Steven Parnham, anticipated the fast pace and when he moved on Rommel entering the home straight Disposition simply couldn’t run him down.
Rommel had raced in third position, for most of the race, with Disposition behind him in fifth while the third placegetter, Say Geronimo, was in fourth spot.
The trainer told his eldest son to keep the horse balanced on the turn. “Rommel can sometimes get unbalanced in his races and it was a cool ride by Steven,” Parnham senior said.
It was a welcome turn of fortune for the capable rider. Last season he finished in the top trio in the metropolitan jockeys premiership. However, injuries sustained in two race falls this season this season have impacted on him.
Neville Parnham said he expected Rommel would appreciate the 1800m of the Kingston Town Classic in a couple of weeks.
Parnham was inducted into Racing’s Hall of Fame last weekend and is WA’s most successful trainer ever, having won 13 trainers premierships.
By John Elsegood