Jarvis Carries Moruya’s Hopes With Rouge In Country Championships

The home track advantage and a horse racing at the peak of his form give Moruya trainer Natalie Jarvis reason to believe Rouge Lune could give the locals something to cheer for in Sunday’s $150,000 Newhaven Park SERA Country Championships (1400m).

Trainer Natalie Jarvis (Pic: Bradley Photos)

Rouge Lune is the only locally trained galloper in the South East’s chance to send to two horses to Randwick for the $1 million Final next month and Jarvis said it’s great for the four-year-old’s owner-breeder Tony Penglase to be represented.

Naturally the race has been a target but the gelding needed to lift his rating when he came back into work and he’s done that with two wins from three recent runs.

“He’s the only local horse, his owner lives on the south coast and he bred the horse as well so it’d be great to see him run well,’’ Jarvis said.

“It’d be the biggest race our stable has won if he could win this, so it’s a big deal and it’d be a big deal for the jockey club to have a local horse win it.

“You have to have a high benchmark to get in the heat and a lot of trainers in our district have been hunting wins to get their points up in the months leading up.

“We were fortunate he was able to get enough points last start to be well in the field.”

An on pace Canberra win a month ago secured Rouge Lune’s place in the Championships field and Jarvis said it was an ideal lead in to his biggest test to date.

He’s only been beaten once on his home track, a half length defeat back in September, and while he’s drawn wide it’s not something Jarvis considered to be a negative given the layout of the course and the likely leaders drawn out there with him.

“He’s been really consistent and especially at the Moruya track, he really loves racing here,’’ she said.

“The surface really suits him, he likes a bit of give in the track and we’ve got a sand based surface so it’s not rock hard like some other tracks can be.

“He has a habit of drawing an outside gate which he’s done again. It’s at the end of the back straight so they have a really long straight run before they start turning which is helpful.

“He doesn’t have to move over immediately, he can sit out there a bit while he finds a position.

“The heats tend to be run a bit wild so it’s hard to tell going into it how it will play out. We’re expecting the gate not to be a major problem for him.”

Jarvis has been based at Moruya for six years and has no more than 20 in work, she’s had a few Country Championships runners but says Rouge Lune, $26 with TAB on Saturday, would be one of her better chances.

She rates the interestingly named Steamed Hams as a winning hopes for the stable at the Moruya meeting.

The owner is a big fan of The Simpsons and that’s where the name originated, along with naming the race the Heck Of A Deck – Obviously Grilled Handicap (1650m). It’s sponsored by the mare’s owner so the latter half is another Simpsons reference.

“She’s been going well, she’s a little horse but she always tries very hard,’’ Jarvis said.

“She’s getting better as she steps up over ground.”

– Racing NSW

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