Artful sprint win


BIG RETURN: Artful Rambler returned to racing with a big win in the Benchmark 80 Handicap over 1000 meters at the Port Lincoln races on Sunday. Tintagel Rocker ran second. Photo: Lisa Povey
BIG RETURN: Artful Rambler returned to racing with a big win in the Benchmark 80 Handicap over 1000 meters at the Port Lincoln races on Sunday. Tintagel Rocker ran second. Photo: Lisa Povey

Artful Rambler broke the on-course TAB with a barnstorming win in the benchmark 80 sprint over 1000 metres at the Port Lincoln races on Sunday.

Punters queued to get paid out after the race but some were left holding their tickets after the TAB ran out of money to pay the punters.

Settling in the back half of the field the Robert King-trained mare let go with her renowned sprint to overhaul the leaders who had overdone it early to score her 11th win from 32 starts at the track.

"We thought this might be a bit short for her but Sophie (Logan) said she had it won a long way out," King said.

"She travelled well and came into the race strong.

"The pace up front helped her."

King is likely to back Artful Rambler up next Wednesday at Port Lincoln.

"There's a 1200m race next meeting, we will likely go there and might have a look at the Riziz series final later on."

Eleven-year-old Tintagel Rocker showed he still has the zest for racing.

Travelling well behind the speed, he loomed to win in the home straight but had no answer to the finishing burst of Artful Rambler.

Tolstoy was another that appreciated the hot early speed, finishing well from last and will be winning again soon while Irish Mint was disappointing after being in the early speed battle.

Another highlight of the day was the three-year-old event, which was loaded with horses with plenty of upside.

The Jackie Stoetzer-trainer Justica ($9.50) was able to gun down a gallant Blue Granite late in the race.

Justica is by underrated sire Barbados out of the smart race mare Mega Queen and this daughter looks to have many of her mother's attributes.

Justica is likely to improve with racing.

"She finished off nicely, still a bit green and got a bit to learn but she will progress and learn from that," Stoetzer said.

"We think she will go well up to 1400m in the near future."

Crimson Tycoon (1.18 fav) justified his short quote to win the opening race of the season by eight lengths for visiting trainer Will Clarken.

Irish Mambo ($14) with the light weight kicked back to win the third race after being headed to defeat Stonecast in an on-paced dominated race.

Other winners on the day included Oblique Line ($21) for John Dunn, the Kerry Vantijn-trained In the Fast Lane ($3.20) and Sarah's Jule at $31 knocked out punters in the last race of the day for Gawler trainer Michael McLean.

The club also acknowledged the recent passing of local racing identity Gerald Schlink on the day with jockeys wearing black armbands in the main race of the day to pay tribute to the contribution Schlink has made to the industry on the Eyre Peninsula over many years.