By Glenn Davis
Trainer Rob Heathcote will persevere with blinkers on promising sprinter Ziemba when the gelding makes his comeback at Doomben on Wednesday.
The well bred Ziemba will be chasing his third win from only four starts when he resumes in the Big Screen On The Green Class Three Handicap (1350m).
Ziemba won his first two starts without the head gear at the midweeks at Doomben and Ipswich during the winter.
Heathcote then used blinkers on Ziemba for the first time when he finished fifth when stepping up to a Saturday class Doomben meeting in mid-July.
“He was good winning his first two runs without the blinkers,” Heathcote said.
“I put them on for his last run and he had just had had enough at his third run in his first preparation when he ran fifth.”
Heathcote has a good opinion of Ziemba who is raced by his wife Vicki and several long-time clients including Steve Ciobo and Bruce Harry in a syndicate of ten.
Heathcote expects Ziemba to be competitive but admits it’s an unusual distance to start his campaign off.
“I’ve got a nice opinion of him and the plan is to take him through the grades and pick out the right races much like what we’re doing with Guntantes,” he said.
“He’s related in a funny sort of way to Guntantes and I’ve been having a bit of luck lately with his sire, Rothesay.
“It’s a little unusual for him to kick off in a 1350 metre race and I’ve got the feeling he might need the run.
“I just felt 1350 metres would be better off than in a 1200 metre race where he’d probably get run off his feet and he’ll be able to get into a better rhythm in this race.”
Ziemba will be out to continue one of the State’s most successful breeding stories.
His mother is Funtantes, who Heathcote trained throughout her career.
Funtantes won 10 races for Heathcote including the Group Two Champagne Classic during her career and amassed more than $700,000 in prizemoney.
She is a daughter of the prolific broodmare Cantantes who recently died after producing a string of winners including the promising Guntantes.
Ziemba is the first foal to race from Funtantes after her first foal died of a snake bite when only a month old.
Ziemba is named after the mathematician Dr William Ziemba whose research studies included Investment, Gambling and Sports Betting.
Racing Queensland webnews November 12