Rock ‘N’ Tori eyes Yass-Funny Hill Cup double

Recent Yass Picnic Cup winner Rock ‘N’ Tori will be out to win Saturday’s Funny Hil Cup at Crookwell.

Lauren Davies believes Rock ‘N’ Tori can add to her recent Yass Cup victory by winning Saturday’s $11,000 Funny Hill Cup at Crookwell. 

Late last month, the Moruya galloper was a class above her rivals in the Yass Picnic Cup, winning by over a length after a brilliant steer from Maddy Wright. 

While the popular picnic jockey won’t be in the saddle on Saturday, Davies loses nothing in experience or ability, with Leeton-based hoop Breanna Bourke taking the ride. 

“Breanna has ridden for us before, and 12 months ago at Yass, she had her first win for us when winning on Rock ‘N Tori,” Davies told NSW Country and Picnic Racing. 

“She knows the horse. Maddy’s not riding, but it is good to be able to use Breanna.”

The seven-year-old won three picnic races on the trot last year, taking out Class B Handicaps at Yass (1200m), Ardlethan (1400m), and Grenfell (1400m). 

This year, she is up in class but has continued to deliver good results for connections. 

“Heading to Yass, she had been going really well, and we expected her to run a nice race,” Davies said. 

“It helped to have Maddy on with how she jumped her out and got her into a good position, and we were absolutely over the moon with the result.”

Davies suggested that Rock ‘N’ Tori had grown in confidence following her Yass victory, which was the seven-year-old’s sixth win of her career. 

“She has done even better since Yass,” Davies said. 

“I couldn’t be any happier with her; she pulled up well and was really confident after that run, and there is no reason she can’t do it again at Crookwell.”

The Moruya galloper runs into a better field at Crookwell, which will include the Connie Greig-trained Linden Tree (Izzy Neale), the Neil Osborne-trained Ronny Rock Art (Kate Petersen), and Gratz Vella-trained Crucial Witness (Michael Wade).

“It’s a good little race and a touch stronger than Yass, but I think she is up to it,” Davies said. 

“She is doing well and good, and we couldn’t be happier with her.”

The Toronado mare has drawn well with gate two, and while Crookwell is a unique racecourse, Davies doesn’t believe it will impact her versatile mare’s chances. 

“She doesn’t seem to worry about what type of course it is, and she gets through the firm and soft, so I don’t think it will be a concern,” Davies said. 

If Rock ‘N’ Tori runs well at Crookwell, the NSW Picnic Champion Series could come into play, with Davies already looking ahead to other picnic meetings. 

“The picnics look like the right place for her, and we’ll see how she goes in these Picnic Cups,” Davies said. 

“She will probably head to Cootamundra and then to Grenfell, and we’ll think about it (Picnic Champion Series) and see how she goes.”

It’s going to be a big day for the Binda Picnic Race Club, with the Funny Hill Cup headlining the six-race card.