Marasco on comeback trail

Perth star Marasco is back in training for a tilt at weight-for-age races during the winter season at Belmont.

The Fred Kersley trained gelding will race first-up in the G3 Roma Cup (1200m) at Belmont Park next month.  “Marasco is sound and in good health,” Kersley said earlier this week.  “He received a VIP welcome back to the stable but the horse must show he’s entirely happy about a comeback before we press on.”

Besides the Roma Cup on May 28, other races on the radar are the Hyperion Stakes (1600m) on June 25 and Strickland Stakes (2000m) in July.

Kersley revealed Marasco had thrived since his last outing in the Scahill Stakes at Ascot in December.  Connections retired the gelding after he finished fifth in the Group 3 Sprint behind Waratah’s Secret.

Marasco (8g Scenic – Bluegrass Belle by Is It True) has won 16 races and over $1.74 million for Kersley’s wife Judith and Oakland Park owners Neville and Sue Duncan.

He has won to G2 level in the Winterbottom and Lee-Steere Stakes at Ascot.  He also added a G2 in the 2007 Makybe Diva Stakes at Flemington defeating Apache Cat and Zipping.

Prior to that breakthrough in the Eastern Stakes, Marasco had been runner-up to El Segundo in the G1 Orr Stakes and followed up with unlucky seconds to Pompeii Ruler in the G2 St George Stakes and G1 Australian Cup.

The Duncans sold his dam Bluegrass Belle for $40,000 to Belmont Bloodstock at the Magic Millions Perth Autumn Sale in March.  The 17 year-old mare was covered by Viscount in November.