GBI RACING

Texas Rock swoops late to land Testimonial Stakes at Navan

Texas Rock (yellow)

The drop in trip helped Texas Rock run out a game winner of the Waterford Testimonial Stakes at Navan.

Michael Grassick's six-year-old was running over a mile just three starts back, yet the stiff six furlongs in this Listed contest was right up his street.

The race changed in complexion with 100 yards to run when Alphabet's stride began to shorten and it became clear she was going to be caught.

The cavalry were charging with Son Of Rest, Maarek and G Force all in the chasing pack, but the Fran Berry-ridden Texas Rock (16-1) prevailed in a tight finish.

Grassick said: "I was going to run him in the Concorde last weekend, but the ground was so bad I'd only tear the heart out of him. We said we'd take a chance at six (furlongs) and Joe (Keeling, owner) was quite keen to give it a go.

"I thought he might get a bit outpaced, but he was always comfortable and he was so genuine. The finish is testing here and we felt that would play into his hands.

"He will probably go for the Knockaire Stakes at Leopardstown over seven furlongs and that will be him for the year."

He added: "I have eight in training at the moment and this fella has been a great flag-bearer for the yard over the last few years. I bought his brother the other day from Germany."

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