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Rising star out of ‘Isolation’

In the current COVID-dominated landscape it would be difficult to find a more topical ‘omen’ tip Australia-wide this weekend than Isolating, which is chasing a sixth straight win at Sandown Park on Saturday night.

Handled superbly by Karen Pitt at Pearcedale, Isolating has ‘separated’ himself from his rivals in winning five on end, completing a stunning return after sustaining a career-threatening injury back in February after just three starts.

However, it’s likely the superbly related son of Fernando Bale and It’s A Wink, whose dam It’s A Blur and grand-dam Weetbix were both G1 finalists, will need more than courage and a catchy name on his side when he faces his most daunting assignment to date in Race 8 at 9.00pm.

The winner of six from 10, including a smart 29.79sec success at Sandown Park two starts back, Isolating will face G2 Geelong Gold Cup winner Weblec Jet and Group finalists Got The Torque, How Not Too, Riccarton Rick and Envy To Burn.

“He’s going really well in easier races but this week is obviously a big step up in class,” said Pitt, who prepares a small but select team with partner, G1-winning mentor Wayne Vassallo.

Pitt admits she’s treating each start – and thus far, win – as a bonus after a cracked shoulder blade placed grave doubt over Isolating’s racing future before it had really got off the ground.

“It wasn’t a good injury and there was no certainty he’d race again,” Pitt explained.

“It was a long, slow process and there were no guarantee that he’d get back.

WATCH: Comeback sprinter Isolating (4) continues his impressive return from a lengthy stint on the sidelines with a 29.79sec win at Sandown Park on July 29.

“We really had no expectations. We just took it step by step and kept progressing, starting him off at Healesville and taking him to different tracks and gradually stepping him up in distance. Touch wood, everything has gone really well.

“I’m really happy for his owners, the Delaroche family, who are good friends of ours. They bred him and to lose the best one in the litter after three starts would have been devastating, so I’m really glad for them.

“It’s hard to tell whether he lost anything with the injury because it happened so early in his career.

“He’s not that young but he’s still quite green. He’s led in most of his wins – he missed it once – so he has to learn how to race and manoeuvre through a field.”

While he brings an imposing ‘picket fence’ form-line into Saturday’s acid test, Isolating (Box 6) is $9.50 in TAB’s market, where How Not Too (Box 3), winner of four of her past five, is $3.10 favourite ahead of Weblec Jet (Box 8) at $3.70.

“I don’t mind him drawn in the middle, but I don’t think he’ll be up to these quality Group dogs at this stage,” Pitt said.

“The main thing is that he gets around safely, and we can keep finding more suitable races for him to keep learning his craft and hopefully develop into a city-class dog.”

The content on this page was accurate at the time of publishing. If you notice any inaccurate content on this page or anywhere on the website, please report it here

About Gerard Guthrie - One of Australia's leading greyhound racing journalists since 2000 with the Greyhound Recorder and now with Greyhound Racing Victoria. Part-owner 2013 Group 1 Paws Of Thunder winner Sheikha. (The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of GRV)
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