Bush galloper making hay while sun shines on Golden Slipper hopes

A week ago doubt hung over Rocket Tiger lining up in the $3.5 million Golden Slipper but when the race was delayed, trainer Scott Spackman made the most of the opportunity.

A Saturday morning track inspection by stewards and Australian Turf Club track staff last weekend resulted in the big Group 1 card being postponed.

Racing NSW announced the meeting would be delayed until next Saturday forcing trainers to adjust preparations and that is where Spackman believes he could have gained an advantage.

“The way it has helped me is because I was able to get out on the course proper down here at Wagga and give him a good hit out on Saturday morning,” Spackman said.

“I doubt the Sydney horses had that luxury.

“I couldn’t have faulted his work either. It was outstanding.

“He galloped on a good track. He worked off from the 1400 metres, went evens (15 second for 200m) to the 800 and home four (400m), dashed up two (200m).

“He’s cherry ripe. His work Saturday morning was as good as ever if not better.”

Rocket Tiger. Photo: Mark Evans/Getty Images.Source:Getty Images

Spackman said this week will be “business as usual” after a week he’d rather forget leading into the race.

Last Tuesday the Racing NSW vet declared Rocket Tiger “2/5 lame in the near fore leg” before clearing the galloper fit to run 48 hours later.

“To me it was never an issue but obviously we had to tick some boxes,” Spackman said. “Had the race been run on Saturday, he’d missed no work, nothing had changed.

“I was ready to rock ‘n’ roll but with something like that going on we had an couple of interruptions.

“I had to have him scanned, we had a photographer down here taking photos and things like that so obviously I won’t be worrying about all those other distractions last week either.”

Rocket Tiger is a $51 chance for this Saturday’s rescheduled Golden Slipper and will be ridden by Kathy O’Hara.

Originally published asTiger gets an edge over Golden Slipper rivals

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