By Jordan Gerrans
It is an understatement to say gelding Sizzalating has enjoyed his move to the central-west of Queensland.
The son of Sizzling could not break through for a maiden triumph in his first 13 trips to the races in his career.
However, once he finally got that winning feeling, Sizzalating has put eight in a line – leading towards this Saturday’s Outback Racing Showcase Final at McKinaly.
Sizzalating started his racing life with Kristy Best at the Sunshine Coast and while he could not crack a win for her team, he was far from disgraced, running a handful of top three finishes in provincial grade around the south-east of the state.
After a 12th placed finish at Ipswich in July of last year, Sizzalating was eventually sold to the Carolans of Blackall, to be trained by Barcaldine trainer Todd Austin.
Since then, he has not been beaten and goes into Saturday’s $30,000 Outback Racing Showcase Final with aims of making it nine on the bounce.
In the winning sequence, six of his eight wins have been by more than three lengths, with two more than lengths ahead of the field in dominant displays.
“He has not looked back since,” owner Bob Carolan said.
“He has gone from a maiden straight through to Open company, which you do not see very often.”
One of the eight victories was at Barcaldine on Tree of Knowledge day with winning rider Alisha Ross meeting Queensland Racing Minister Grace Grace (pictured) post-race.
Bob, who owns the four-year-old gelding with his wife Pam, has raced gallopers in the bush for the best part of four decades and even dabbled in training himself for a few years.
When former rider Austin finished up in the saddle, Bob quickly realised that the now leading country trainer’s stable would be a better place for his horses to be placed.
They have raced gallopers together since, which includes Birdsville Cup triumphs.
After departing Best's barn, Sizzalating claimed his maiden victory at Blackall by 11.5 lengths just a few months later.
Austin, a butcher by trade, has to take the credit for finding Sizzalating the Carolan’s say, as he did the deal to bring the now star bush horse to the Central West.
Hoop Adam Sewell, who rode the gelding in the majority of his starts for Best, originally recommended Sizzalating to Austin, leading towards the purchase.
“We thought we would gamble on it and bring him out after he pulled up sore from his last start around Brisbane and had a spell, following conversations with the vet,” Bob said.
“He spent some time at my place at Blackall before he went to Todd in Barcaldine and he was going off his brains and I quickly rang Todd and said you need to come and get this horse; he is ready to get back into work.
“He had the three months off.”