Rockin Image Headlines Progress Pace

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Trainer Ron Burke was happy to see his three-year-old colts World Of Rocknroll and Dreamlands Art finished second and third, respectively, behind Rockin Image in last weekend’s Progress Pace elimination race

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He was less thrilled by the margin of defeat – seven lengths – but is hopeful his three-horse entry, which also includes Fred And Ginger, can do damage in Sunday’s $320,000 final.

“All three of them have shots, but it’s a little demoralizing when you get beat by seven in the elimination,” Burke said. “Where can you find seven lengths? But Dover is a very trippy track. If we make it to the front in the final, I don’t think it’ll be as much as just turning (Rockin Image) loose. If he goes by us, he’ll go by us full flight because we’re going to go as hard as we can.

“Maybe with three we can beat one,” he added, laughing.

Rockin Image, trained by Jimmy Takter and driven by Yannick Gingras, got to the front by the halfway point in the elimination and extended his lead at every call before tripping the timer in 1:50. It was the first time Rockin Image led at the half in 12 races dating back to July.

It was Rockin Image’s fifth win of the year, in 19 starts, and increased his season’s earnings to $426,712. He won a division of the Oliver Wendell Holmes on August 7 at the Meadowlands and was second in the Cane Pace on September 6 at Freehold.

“I thought he raced huge last week and he did it so easy,” Gingras said. “Jimmy thinks he’s got things figured out a little bit with him. Obviously, he was right. Jimmy changed the way he trained him a little bit and we raced him a little differently. We’ve been racing him off the back and I put him on the front last week and he responded.”
Rockin Image will start the Progress final from post seven.

“Ideally, I’d be the last one to the front, so post seven is not that big of a concern,” Gingras said. “With a good effort he’ll be right there. If he does as good this week, I’m very confident.”

In addition to facing three horses from the Burke Stable, Rockin Image will see two from trainer George Teague Jr. – Windfall Blue Chip and Delmarvalous.

Delmarvalous won the $500,000 Delvin Miller Adios on July 31 at The Meadows and also captured a division of the Holmes.

Burke’s Fred And Ginger won the $300,000 Max Hempt Memorial on May 22 at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs and was second in last month’s Breeders Crown on the same oval. World Of Rocknroll won the $500,000 Hoosier Cup on May 29 at Hoosier Park.

“I was thrilled with World Of Rocknroll,” Burke said. “He was controllable; he’s finally harnessed some of his speed. He’s a very fast horse. With us, at points he’s been blazing, but can’t be controlled. I was happy with Dreamlands Art. He had a screwy trip. He couldn’t make the lead, got shuffled back, had to come early, but never gave up. Freddy was off a month. He did have pace in the lane and (driver Tim Tetrick) was happy. Of all of them, he’ll have the biggest bounce back this week.”


This story courtesy of Harness Racing Communications, a division of the U.S. Trotting Association. For more information, visit www.ustrotting.com.