The faith of Cambridge trainer Roger James in Terrifique was rewarded at Ellerslie last Saturday. James has had a favourable opinion of the son of Teofilio since he began racing with a couple of trials, the first as a late two-year-old and the second as a three-year-old in September 2015.
Terrifique won that second trial and won another trial last autumn after finishing an eye-catching fifth in his raceday debut at Taupo.
His first win came in just his second start, over 1400 metres at Te Aroha 12 months ago, and James and Terrifique’s owner-breeder Joan Egan then had to wait almost 12 months for the second win, which occurred in the Celebrating Star Wondering 1200 last Saturday.
Though unsuccessful between times Terrifique was placed in four of his six starts between his wins and on most occasions he was doing his best work over the final stages, sometimes without much luck in the running.
One of those unlucky runs was at Ellerslie during the Auckland Cup Carnival when he finished third behind Peaky Blinkers over 1400 metres. On that occasion rider Danielle Johnson had difficulty finding a clear run in the straight and Terrifique was held up until inside the final 80 metres.
James freshened Terrifique after the unlucky third and Shaun McKay climbed aboard for the first time last Saturday and guided him to a head win over Honour Princess.
With a proven liking for easing of the ground, Terrifique looks set to improve his strike rate and could develop into a nice five-year-old next season. – Cambridge JC