Ben Crosby following in his father’s footsteps with Exciting Juvenile pace

This Saturday evening’s Changeover 2YO Classic might just be the kick-start of a “blossoming” training journey for Marburg’s Ben Crosby.

The son of well-known former trainer Bill Crosby, Ben has taken the reins in the trainers department of late, with his father still in the ownership and breeding game, including with exciting youngster Frankie Ferocious.

The unbeaten Frankie Ferocious will be the stable’s hopeful in the $20,770 feature over 1660 metres on Saturday evening at Albion Park.

Ben Crosby has been on the committee at the Marburg Pacing Association for some time, regularly working the bar at the club’s race meetings, which only became more frequent in the early stages of this year when Albion Park was out of action due to the floods.

Denis Smith, who is the Marburg Pacing Association secretary and has known the Crosby family well for years, thinks the 40-year-old Ben is on the up as a trainer.

“Bill was a very successful hobbyist as a trainer but has decided to stand back recently to give Ben a go as a trainer,” Smith said.

“They both have excellent business acumen away from the horses and I think Ben is about to really come into his own as a trainer.

“I think he has a brilliant future and is likely to blossom.”

He has just 12 winners to his name as a trainer – with three of those coming over the last month.

Crosby trained a winner on Tuesday afternoon at Albion Park – Waterline – who followed up her encouraging debut effort by breaking her maiden status in the opening event.

The stable’s emerging star – Frankie Ferocious – won his first career trip to the races in the middle of last month and the state’s leading reinsman – Nathan Dawson – was not missing the drive in the Changeover 2YO Classic for anything.

The prolific Dawson recently copped a two-week suspension for shifting in but made sure that he was back in the sulky for the bay colt’s second career assignment.

“I took my suspension after nine days so I was back in time to drive this horse,” Dawson said.

“I was keen to be with Frankie Ferocious.

“I reckon he is a pretty good horse and he should have a pretty good two-year-old season.”

Owned by father Bill and trainer by son Ben, the regally bred Frankie Ferocious justified his short quote with the bookmakers on debut just under three weeks ago, taking over just before the home turn to score by almost six metres.

The two-year-old is by Captaintreacherous out of Morethanmeetstheye.

The top driver in Queensland this season liked what he saw on debut and thinks he will only get better with more racing.

“He did good, he still had a bit left in the tank and is pretty green,” Dawson said.

“With more racing, the better he is going to get.

“He goes pretty good and I think he is only going to get better; he has a bright future ahead of him.

Frankie Ferocious has drawn one for Saturday night, which the reinsman is happy with.
“He has good speed so we have options there depending on what we want to do,” Dawson said.

Dawson, who freelances as a reinsman to a number of trainers, picked up the drive on the emerging youngster by chance, with Crosby’s usual driver – Nikki Chalk – taking time away from the sport to welcome a child into the world recently. 

“Ben is a really good bloke and easy to get along with,” Dawson said of the trainer.

The Crosby’s bred Frankie Ferocious and always have a handful of mares to keep their pacing stocks ticking over.

“That is what we do, we do not train for outside stables,” Ben said.

“We like to develop horses ourselves.

“Dad raced Morethanmeetstheye after we purchased her as a weanling and she was a very good horse for us.”

As Ben explains, the family always like to work around half a dozen horses in their team – keeping the stable small – while focusing in on juveniles they have bred themselves.

“We have been quiet over the last few years but we are building up nicely now,” Ben said of his and his father’s horses in recent times.

Also, in the Changeover 2YO Classic field for Saturday evening is Cradock, a young pacer who is named after leading Brisbane-based journalist Robert ‘Crash’ Craddock.

The respected “Crash” is a harness racing fan himself with the Graham Dwyer-trained gelding coming from the sire – Sportswriter.

By Jordan Gerrans