Kasey Hocking is still trying to work out what sort of a horse Needitwantitdoit is, but if Sunday’s showing at Dubbo Harness Racing Club is anything to go by she’s got herself a talent.
After being in the paddock for more than two years, Needitwantitdoit returned to the track two weeks ago at Young.
He finished seventh for Parkes-based Hocking that day but on Sunday in the opening heat of the Dubbo RSL Club Resort series, Hocking produced a fine front-running performance to lead the $12 chance to victory.
After setting the pace up front for the entire trip, Hocking caught her rivals napping and kicked clear at the top of the back straight on the bell lap and that proved the decisive moment in the 2120m race.
It was the gelding’s first win in 12 career starts, the first 10 of those under previous trainer Nathan Hurst.
“I’d only raced him the once and that was at Young and he didn’t have much luck there,” Hocking said.
“We’re still working out what the best distance is for him and how to race him. Because he’s a bigger horse he’s a bit hard to rate in the run but today he was too good for them.”
Immaturity issues forced Needitwantitdoit to be spelled for so long but Hocking and her team have enjoyed a positive time in work and on the track since the now six-year-old’s return.
“As a juvenile he was very immature and he just needed time to get his head together,” she said.
“We gave him a couple of weeks and we’re really happy with how he’s going. Winning today was a big bonus.
“His trialing in Parkes was really good and all the signs were positive. He’s got really good gate speed and he likes to be up in front and the draw today helped.
“He was able to lead pretty comfortably.”
Going from gate one, Hocking was able to easily take the early lead and set the tone.
Going around in a handy 29.8 seconds in the first quarter, the field was spread after both Nicka Time ($51) and Harley James ($26) galloped and dropped right out of contention.
Needitwantitdoit led from Sporty Ranger ($3.10) and Luke’s Gift ($6.50) while ($2.40) favourite Smiling Sam sat within range further back.
But no one could manage to go with Hocking when she made her move and while Needitwantitdoit tired late, he still scored a commanding win from Luke’s Gift and Sporty Ranger.
“I still get the feeling he’s a bit of a once-paced horse so I think the way to win races is to be up with a horse outside of him and run them off their feet, basically,” Hocking said.
“He did get a bit tired towards the end but being a big horse it’s hard to rate him.”
Shadow Dealer ($2.30) won the second heat.