A terrific training performance by Gai Waterhouse has seen Rain Drum score an upset win in the Group 2 $175,000 Ascend Sales Trophies Shannon Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill today.
Having his first run for sixteen months over 1500m, Waterhouse showed why she is regarded as one of the best trainers in the country by getting the lightly raced six year old to beat some tough seasoned gallopers first up.
Rain Drum hasn’t started since winning a 2000m restricted race at Rosehill in May, 2012, and is now a Group 2 winner.
The Fastnet Rock gelding has had plenty of injury problems in the past but after two recent barrier trial wins, Waterhouse had him primed for a winning first up performance.
“He’s a horse that broke down. He’s by Fastnet Rock, he was bought at the Easter Sales. He broke down then he came back won a couple of races then he went amiss and we turned him out again,” Waterhouse said.
“A big effort winning first up. Peter Robl used the fence to advantage, shot along the inside there.”
Peter Robl took advantage of the inside barrier and took a sit on Rain Drum behind the leaders and looked like being blocked for a run at the 300m but was able to squeeze in between runners at the 250m and dash up the inside.
The ground that Robl saved by sticking to the fence was enough to get Rain Drum ($20) home by a head over Centennial Park ($19) who loomed up as the winner in the middle of the track with the Waterhouse trained Our Desert Warrior ($9) a long head away in third spot.
Centennial Park, with Hugh Bowman riding hard looked set to score his ninth career win out wide on the track but was denied by Rain Drum who made it six wins from eleven starts.
Robl was quick to applaud the training feat of Waterhouse as he was swamped by happy winning owners in the enclosure.
“It’s a marvellous training effort. He’s had a long time off and he’s come here first up over 1500m and was cherry ripe to win,” Robl said.
“He was the strongest on the line and travelled sweet in the run.”