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Saunders On Rock N Roll Heaven: "I Wouldn’t Trade Colts With Anybody At This Point"


Published: June 9, 2010 11:33 am ET

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Ever since Rock N Roll Heaven started to put in some big miles last year as a two-year-old, trainer Bruce Saunders told everyone that his Rocknroll Hanover colt was the real deal. Heading into Saturday's Burlington Stakes at Mohawk Racetrack, the colt is continuing to walk the walk.

Courtesy of his 1:48.3 mile at the Meadowlands Racetrack in his division of the $200,000 New Jersey Sires Stakes finals on May 29, Rock N Roll Heaven is the fastest three-year-old thus far in this 2010 racing campaign.

The career winner of eight of 14 races and $850,386 in purse earnings has drawn Post 2 for Sunders and driver Dan Dube in the second of three $100,000 divisions of the Burlington, which will no doubt be the focal point of Mohawk Racetrack's card of racing this Saturday.

Rock N Roll Heaven - $200,000 NJSS Final - 1:48.3

“I think his record speaks for itself -- he’s bigger, stronger and faster,” Saunders told the Woodbine Entertainment Group. “I think he’s getting better with every start and that’s what you want to see at this stage. I wouldn’t trade colts with anybody at this point.”

Coming into this year, Saunders was pointing Rock N Roll Heaven towards three major races: the North America Cup, Meadowlands Pace and Breeders Crown.

With five starts under his belt already, the compact pacer has a head start on some of his primary rivals in the division and that suits the trainer just fine.

“I’ve taken a little criticism for racing him in some of these earlier races,” Saunders admitted. “But I really feel that these colts have to be stretched out before they come into races like this. His only loss this year came in the Berry’s Creek elimination and I think he needed that both physically and mentally. He’s realizing he’s not out there to play and he’s been a better horse since that race.”

Rock N Roll Heaven was pegged as the 8-1 third choice in Trot Magazine's 2010 Pepsi North America Cup Spring Book.

The NA Cup will get underway with eliminations on Saturday, June 19 prior to the $1.5 million final on Saturday, June 26.

The complete fields for each of the Burlington divisions appear below.

For a free, printable program pages of each of the Burlington divisions courtesy of TrackIT, click the appropriate links below.

Division 1 (Race 5)
PP - Horse - Listed Driver
1 - Malicious - P. MacDonell
2 - Dr Dreamy - C. Callahan
3 - Kyle Major - J. Jamieson
4 - Sportswriter - M. MacDonald
5 - Grin For Money - J. Moiseyev
6 - Willies Place - L. Ouellette
7 - Im Gorgeous - C. Callahan
8 - OK Commander - D. McNair
9 - Twin B Warrior - J. Jamieson
10 - Code Word - J. Jamieson

Division 2 (Race 8)
PP - Horse - Listed Driver
1 - Future Million - S. Allard
2 - Rock N Roll Heaven - D. Dube
3 - Rock Me Please - S. Condren
4 - Ideal Matters - D. Palone
5 - Windfall Blue Chip - C. Callahan
6 - Stonebridge Tonic - D. McNair
7 - Art N Charm - M. Saftic
8 - Mach Dreamer - L. Ouellette
9 - Rojettes Best - TBA
10 - Triple Major - S. Filion
11 - Shipps Xtravganza - R. Waples

Division 3 (Race 9)
PP - Horse - Listed Driver
1 - Touch The Rock - R. Waples
2 - Luckcamotion - K. Oliver
3 - Mcaracas - M. Baillargeon
4 - BP Chimo - S. Filion
5 - Delmarvalous - C. Callahan
6 - Woodstock - D. Palone
7 - Aracache Hanover - D. McNair
8 - Keystone Raptor - J. Moiseyev
9 - Trick Man - R. Paver
10 - Warrawee Legend - R. Zeron

To view the complete entries for Mohawk's Saturday card, click here.

(With files from WEG)

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