Tornado Alley looking up to big brother

Tornado Alley has inherited some of big brother Shuka’s ability.

That was evident after the son of Bachelor Duke lived up to expectations with a debut win in the Lincoln Lodge Juvenile at Woodville yesterday for Cambridge trainer Ralph Manning.

Tornado Alley was backed into favouritism in the five-horse field for the 1100-metre event on the strength of two trials placings, particularly a second behind the highly-rated Smashing at the Te Aroha trials on December 17.

Smashing was the “talk horse” when making her debut at New Plymouth on December 27 and she didn’t let down her supporters who backed her into $1.80 for a win.

Owned and bred by The Oaks Stud’s Dick Karreman, Tornado Alley started at slightly longer odds ($2.80) when ridden by Kelly Myers (who had been aboard Smashing in her debut win) and though he got home by only a neck there was plenty of upside to the performance.

“He’s not really a two-year-old type,” said Manning. “After the way he trialled with the filly (Smashing) we pretty well expected him to win.

“He’ll only improve with the experience. He can go back to The Oaks for a break. He can have a week in the paddock then we’ll look for something for him in five or six weeks.

”He’s a nice horse and he’s good enough to go for some black-type later in the season, something like the 1600-metre race (Champagne Stakes) at Ellerslie.

“I think he could be a nice guineas horse. We’ll just take our time with him.”

Tornado Alley bounced out to lead in the Lincoln Lodge Juvenile and was pressured by All Charm while Lyric’s Way settled into the trail with Lookherepal and Maggie’s Secret in a line behind as the field worked to the 700 metres.

Maggie’s Secret swept up wide out to join the leaders on straightening for the run home but Tornado Alley refused to yield over the final stages and won by a neck from Lyric’s Way who was clear of All Charm.

“Kelly said he would have been better tucked in with something to follow but it didn’t work out that way,” said Manning. “She likes him.”

Tornado Alley is the fourth foal of the Cape Cross mare Alabama Rose, who was unbeaten in two trials when trained by Ken Kelso but never got to the races.

Bachelor Duke has been Alabama Rose’s only mate since she went to stud in 2006. Her first foal, Emerged, was a one-race winner at Gisborne and her third foal, Delta Rose, was a winner at Ellerslie last February.

But it is her second foal, Shuka, who has set the bar for Alabama Rose’s progeny, winning seven races with the highlight being Group One success in Rydges Wellington Captain Cook Stakes at Trentham last month.