Rocky Range could be a surprise starter in the G1 Railway Stakes after causing an upset in the LR Ascot Gold Cup (1800m) on Saturday.
Rocky Range (8g Eternity Range – Love the Sun by Marooned) put his more favoured rivals off the bit with a sharp sprint approaching the turn and he was still strong on the line to defeat Gum Nut Guru (Verglas) and Mega Steel (Helenus).
The win was a welcome success at stakes level for renowned trainer Alan Mathews. “He ran fourth in the Northam Cup and it was a good run,” Mathews said. “He just loves Ascot and is nominated for the Railway. We were going to send him to the paddock but you never know.”
The million-dollar Railway Stakes over 1600m is scheduled for November 19 at Ascot.
Rocky Range is raced by Don Hoar and was a $36,000 buy from Mungrup Stud at the 2005 Perth Magic Millions. The Gold Cup was his sixth win at Ascot for earnings of $360,000.
His sire Eternity Range (Majestic Light) is from a half-sister to champion sire Miswaki (Mr. Prospector). He won at Saint-Cloud and was G1 placed at Longchamp before transferring Stateside to win the LR Big Shot Stakes at Santa Anita.
Eternity Range originally stood in Queensland before transferring to Mungrup. He is now based with Don Hammarquist at Walkaway for a $1,100 service fee.
Hammarquist trained Eternity Range gelding Sunrange to a Listed victory in the 2010 Kalgoorlie Gold Cup.
Rocky Range has a half-sister by Flying Pegasus entered for the 2012 Perth Magic Millions.