A PAIR of locally-trained pacers turned heads on Thursday night's nine-race program at Lord's Raceway.
Fresh from a treble at Mildura on Wednesday night, the combination of Kate Hargreaves and Alex Ashwood unleashed their impressive debutante Sheshell Rock with instant impact.
Up against six rivals, including the short-priced favourite Niki Nah Nah, the two-year-old filly shot straight to the front from his gate five and controlled the race, before exploding away to win by 6.3 metres over the Peter Manning-trained Jaziah, with the Glenn Douglas-trained and driven Ozzie Playgirl further back in third.
A commanding victory for Sheshell Rock came on the back of wins in both her recent trials and some excellent work on the track at the couple's base at Shelbourne.
Ashwood, who notched up Victorian driving win number 35 this season aboard Sheshell Rock, admitted no surprise with the filly's performance.
"(I'm) very rapt, from day one she has always shown speed and promise. She's had two soft trials and we thought she was pretty nice leading into the race," he said.
"She's probably one of the quickest horses I've sat behind in my career. I've sat behind some pretty fast horses like Chilli Palmer and she smashes it with them point-to-point speed-wise.
Sheshell Rock (@ARocknrollDance - Alashell) could not have been anymore impressive when winning on debut tonight for @Katehargreaves7 and @albieashwood.— Alabar Farms (@Alabarfarms) February 13, 2020
The two year old filly rated 1:57.1 and cut out the last 800 metres in 55.8!
Clearly a filly going places. pic.twitter.com/aJsmgc7fK1
"It's no surprise what she did - she works against Dyslexic and Beat City at home and just strolls past them. They've been racing at the derby level, so she's going to be pretty handy I think."
Not to be outdone, Maiden Gully trainer Maree Campbell and Belittled ensured their share of the spotlight, with the four-year-old gelding setting a new track in winning the 1650m Sheahan Plumbing Pace (NR 56 to 60).
Adding to the thrill was the fact Belittled, who was driven by champion reinsman Chris Alford, is owned and bred by the Campbells.
"We've always known he's had good speed - and we don't tell the drivers what to do - but Chris had the race pretty well sussed out before he went out there," Campbell said.
"He knew there would be a bit of speed on early and he said we'll just sit back and see what happens.
"Everything went to plan. We didn't expect those times, but we'll gladly take them."
Belittled has proven a more than handy performer with four wins and seven placings from his 19 starts, with two of his wins coming at Lord's Raceway.
Campbell confirmed another of the stable's favourites Lucinda Mac as a likely contender in next week's Breed for Speed series heats at Bendigo.
Also among the winners on Thursday night was former Bendigo trainer-driver Chris Svanosio (now based at Romsey) with the five-year-old mare Emijay.
What a horse! What a drive @ChrisAlford5000 puppet the master. And how about our trainers Maree and @vege07 can’t thank you guys enough for the excitement you give us with our horses. Belittled you little Gun 🔫 lazy 1.51.9. @Duano73@nathanturley@leighholmes#roguedoggzpic.twitter.com/8YVVseszTa— Rogue Doggz (@DoggzRogue) February 13, 2020
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