Foaled in 2010, Minella Rocco is in Irish racehorse currently owned by John P McManus. Despite being a relative newcomer to the world of horse racing, he has already found himself being thrust upon the pressure of being one of the horses in the Grand National 2017. Minella Rocco has taken part only in the jump events so far.
After entering into the world of racing in 2015, he has managed eight starts with three of them ending up as victories. The win rate of 37.5% for such a young horse are factors that have made him a popular amongst the horses Grand National 2017 is likely to see.
Minella Rocco’s first race was in February 2015 when he lined up as one of the 12 runners at Kempton Park. Trained by Jonjo O’Neill, he managed to win his first event – New Racing UK iPad App Novices’ Hurdle. This victory alone was not enough to elevate the status of Minella Rocco, but it arrived in the form of a Newbury event – Physicool ‘National Hunt’ Novices’ Hurdle – only a few days later.
He was not going to race again until the end of 2015, but it was clear that the long time out of the action brought in some rustiness. After struggling at events at Haydock and Cheltenham, Minella Rocco was hoping for a better 2016. It was of paramount importance if he was going to be considered as one of the Grand National runners for 2017. The BetBright Realfansonly Novices’ Chase race at Cheltenham saw Minella Rocco finishing a disappointing sixth out of seven runners as a result of a mistake.
Fortunes improved dramatically at Ascot in the Sodexo Reynoldstown Novices’ Chase. After starting out as one of the six runners, Minella Rocco was initially disappointed to have been held up. After a couple of turns, Minella Rocco started making good progress and was just beaten by Vyta Du Roc. The excellent performance raised expectations going into the upcoming races, and he managed to sustain his form at the 146th Year Of The National Hunt Chase Challenge despite being at the rear.
The Grade 3 BetVictor Handicap Chase at Cheltenham saw Minella Rocco finish a close third from Viconte Du Noyer and Warrantor. Even though it was not a win, his good performance elevated the horse into one of the runners Aintree Grand National should keep a watch. Sired by German thoroughbred Shirocco, it is clear that Minella Rocco has an incredible pedigree to dominate top events.