Tasmania’s Rattray family made an astute decision almost two years ago, when they decided to geld their unnamed Roll With Joe/Ashkalini colt. The youngster was showing some promising signs in his early education, but good manners were not amongst them.
He was feisty and arrogant,and more intent on making mischief than getting on with the job.
Castrating a quality colt who’s dam happens to be a multiple winning half sister to Beautide, is not a decision to be taken lightly. But just like Beautide, it was obvious his future prospects would be enhanced by a quick visit to the Veterinary Clinic.
“Even today he will put in a quick little pig root as he goes onto the track”, said his current Sydney trainer James Rattray.
From the moment the son of Roll With Joe was gelded, his outlook changed. Before long he was moving like a really nice horse,and the Rattrays must have been asking themselves “could this bloke be our next Beautide?”.
By the time he was ready to debut in April of last year,Lyrae Graham was his registered owner. Lyrae is engaged to driver Todd Rattray, and the young couple have announced their wedding plans for October of this year.
All horses deserve a decent name, at least until proving themselves worthy or otherwise.Ignatius is a Latin word from medieval times meaning “the fiery one”.
He was tradesmanlike but not spectacular in winning his first two races,but the improvement at his third start was dramatic.With Barry Rattray in the sulky,Ignatius won a $20,000 Sweepstakes Final by sixteen metres in a slick 1.58.2.
He was whisked to Sydney for a Heat of the two year old Breeder’s Challenge, and on face value was a touch disappointing in finishing third. He may have been in need of that first testing run on the Menangle track,because fifteen days later he came out to win the Group 1 Challenge Final in a blistering 1.51.3.
The trademark Rattray patience was evidenced by the fact that Ignatius didn’t race again for almost seven months, winning at Devonport without raising a sweat. A week later, he overcame severe traffic problems to score impressively at Mowbray, and then it was back to young James Rattray in Sydney.
Since then Ignatius has become the most talked about horse in NSW, with a dazzling sequence of four straight wins, including the Young Derby.
“He’s a perfect pacer, and a lovely horse to drive”, enthused James.”He has the capacity to charge out of the gate, and relax as soon as he finds a possie.Beautide was exactly the same”.
The exciting Ignatius will put some spark into the Penrith meeting on Thursday May 31st when he contests a Heat of the Breeder’s Challenge Series. James is not concerned about the switch to the tight 800 metre track.
“He flew around the Devonport circuit which is less than 800 metres, and he was very comfortable at Young” said James
With eleven wins and $148,534 to his credit, Ignatius is a long way short of Beautide’s 49 wins for $2,183,132. It’s unlikely he’ll reach the lofty heights achieved by old “Beau”,but he certainly won’t cause any embarrassment to his celebrated uncle.