Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

Winning Jockey Tipping Longer Distance to Suit Black's a Chop off Old Block; Trainer Tips Big Things after a[euro]Choppera[euro] Makes Mincemeat of Rivals

Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

Winning Jockey Tipping Longer Distance to Suit Black's a Chop off Old Block; Trainer Tips Big Things after a[euro]Choppera[euro] Makes Mincemeat of Rivals

Article excerpt

Byline: racing reporter sport@dailyexaminer.com.au

WHAT do stable star Forestreno and promising Black Katana have in common?

Special treats of chopped carrots!

While lightly raced six-year-old Black Katana has to climb racing's arduous mountain to equal Forestreno's longevity of stellar performances, the Vicki McLeod-trained galloper created an indelible impression at Grafton yesterday.

Virtually untouched to lead throughout, Black Katana, heav-ily backed into $2 favouritism, donkey licked his rivals to record back-to-back wins in the Beamer Tree Services Class 2 (1400m), running a class record to boot.

Four lengths, and it could have been more, separated runner-up Hotact with Orotund two lengths away third. Blessed with a high cruising speed, Black Katana's acceleration after straightening was the mark of a racehorse on the rise.

McLeod, who has taken over the stable reins from husband Phil, calls the sleek black gelding "Choppera.

"He should be even better when he gets over a mile (1600m)," McLeod said.

"He's my favourite horse.

"He gets chopped-up carrots as a special treat. He and Forestreno are the only horses who get it."

Carrots are obviously a recipe for success in the McLeod stable.

Obtained as a tried horse from Queensland, Black Katana is likely to chase a mid-week event in Brisbane next start.

"The manner of his win didn't surprise us," McLeod said.

"He's done extra well since his last win, worked great and it was no surprise he won like he did, acceleration and all.

"He's a lovely relaxed horse."

Vicki and Phil McLeod both paid tribute to Josh Jones' morning track work with the gelding.

On a day when locals dominated, affable Mike Dougherty was in the winners' circle twice under different guises.

As a trainer and part-owner, Dougherty produced Tumblebug ($6.50) to win the Thank You Kel & Graham Maiden (1400m) then shared in the ownership of the Brett Bellamy-trained Narcelo ($2. …

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