Another winning double for Kentuckiana Lodge overnight, with Arden Roanoke and Cardinal Sin winning in fine fashion to take the seasons tally to 11 for Cran and Nathan.
In a small surprise to Cran, Arden Roanoke was victorious in a tricky little race mid-programme, darting through along the inside to grab warm favourite Kruizr right on the line in a very sharp final sectional, time to get home in 26.7 his final 400m.
Covered up in the trail from gate one by driver Matt Anderson, Arden Roanoke warmed to his task in fine style once clear around the home turn, and with work to do made up two-to-three-lengths on Kruizr to grab the nose decision.
It has been a fine start to the season for the four-year-old, winning three from four starts, and unlucky when fifth at Forbury Park when beaten.
Bred by the late Noreen Stiven, the Art Major gelding is the first foal from Rocknroll Arden, winner of the 2013 Caduceus Club Of Southland 2YO Fillies Classic, placed second in the Magness Benrow Sires Stakes Championship (won by Venus Serena) and placed the same season in the Harness Jewels at Ashburton, also behind Venus Serena.
At three she again took Group One placings, third in the Sires Stakes Fillies Championship, second in the Pascoes Northern Oaks, both at Alexandra Park, and third in the Nevele R Fillies Final at Addington before running fourth in the New Zealand Oaks.
She was trained through her career by Mark Purdon and Natalie Rasmussen.
It was a family Cran, and Nathan as a fact, knew only so well, second dam Winter Rose of course the dam of one of Cran’s best pacers Bettor’s Strike (16 wins, $890,000).
If Cardinal Sin was impressive a week earlier, he took it up another notch this time, thumbing his nose at a much tougher bunch to win very comfortably after a confident drive from Blair Orange.
Settling just off the speed early, Orange elected to pounce on the lead 1400m from home and from then on he had them where he wanted, though warm order Louis Litt did issue a challenge before the home turn.
The Bettor’s Delight gelding has some gears left looking at the power he possesses, and Orange, who has driven many a good one over the years, won’t be leaving that seat for some time.
He rated a leisurely 1:59.5 for the 1980m, but ramped it right up with a 57.2 final 800m, speeding home in 27.1.