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Hastings Trackwork 28 Feb 2018

   Last start winner Lady Guinness looked to have trained on well when undergoing a relatively easy 1200-metre workout at this morning’s Hastings track session.

   The Falkirk mare will be stepped up in distance in the Rating 85 race over 2100 metres at Thursday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting and top apprentice Sam Weatherley will ride her again.

   There was very little in the way of fast work this morning, which was confined to the plough (soft).

   Lady Guinness worked on her own from the 1200-metre peg in 1:26.6, running the first 600 metres in 45.7 and then quickening slightly over the last 600 in 40.9. She brought up her fifth victory from only 13 starts when successful in last week’s Poverty Bay Cup (1600m) at Gisborne.

   An Echoes Of Heaven two-year-old gelding was shading a Super Easy-Gold two-year-old filly at the end of a 4000-metre sprint in 24.6 while an Align three-year-old ran an easy 400 metres in 28.3.

   Serenity and an Ekraar three-year-old gelding worked together over 800 metres, the last 600 in 40.7 while a Fastnet Rock two-year-old  and a Castledale three-year-old ran home their last 600 metres in 45.

   Kaipawe, Scandalo and Hunta Pence were among several horses restricted to just half-pace. They all raced at Hastings last Saturday and could back up again at Thursday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting.

   Savvy Dreams was given one round of half-pace. She has come through her run in last Saturday’s Group 1 Haunui Farm Weight-for-age (1600m) in great order and will now head to Ellerslie for the Group 1 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes (2000m) on Saturday week.

Longer assignments now for Lady Guinness 22 Feb 2018

   Hastings trainer Patrick Campbell is now looking to step Lady Guinness up in distance after the four-year-old registered her fifth win from only 13 starts when successful at last Sunday’s Poverty Bay meeting at Gisborne.

   The Falkirk mare, aided by a great ride by top apprentice Sam Weatherley, led all the way in taking out the $30,000 Jon Snow Poverty Bay Cup (1600m).

   Campbell has had a $25,000 Rating 75 race over 2100m at Hastings next Thursday in mind for the horse but is now concerned about how much weight she will have to carry following last Sunday’s win. She has now gone from Rating 71 to Rating 76.

   “She is still eligible to run in the Rating 75 race at Hastings but she will now probably have to carry topweight and, being her first run over a middle distance, it is going to make it that much harder,” Campbell said this week.

   A gear change brought about a required form improvement by Lady Guinness at Gisborne last Saturday. The mare had proved hard to handle at her last start when she laid out entering the home straight at Tauherenikau and threw away an advantage she had on her rivals at that point.

   Campbell opted for a one-cup blinker on the off-side of the horse’s head for last Sunday’s contest and the change worked the oracle. The plan was to try and settle the mare in the trail but, with no early pace, rider Sam Weatherley took her straight to the front and dictated the pace to a nicety. He kicked her clear on the point of the home turn and she ran straight as a gun-barrel up the home straight to hold out the fast finishing Tavigarde by half a neck.

    “She had been going well but she pretty much threw it away last time when she went a bit rank on the home bend,” Campbell said.

   “I had a bit of a tinker with her gear and worked her in a one-cup blinker during the week which seemed to suit her.”

   Campbell is part of the large syndicate that races the mare on lease from her breeder Windsor Park Stud and is keen to find a black-type assignment for her in the future.

   “She is a handy galloper who can handle a bit of cut in the ground, so she should be suited by the autumn tracks,” he said.

   Jason Brittin manages the syndicate that races Lady Guinness and has a 20 per cent share with the other members being Don, Rob and Alistair Poulgrain, Aaron Brittin, Nick Dorwood, Aaron Bourke, Jamie Flett, Mark O’Shaughnessy, Kelly O’Rourke, Eddie and Scotty Burn and Kim Bone.

 

Two big racedays at Hastings

   Hastings racegoers are in for a bonanza week with two feature meetings now scheduled to be run on the Hastings track within the next six days, both carding important black type races.

   With the Otaki track, at this stage, deemed unsuitable for racing tomorrow’s Otaki-Maori meeting has been transferred to Hastings. It is the club’s biggest raceday of the year and features the running of the Group 1 $200,000 Haunui Farm Weight-for-age Classic.

   The 1600m event has drawn small fields in recent years but the change of venue has enticed a number of extra horses from northern stables and there is a full field of 14 entered. They include last season’s New Zealand champion horse of the year Bonneval, last season’s champion sprinter Start Wondering, other Group 1 winners in Authentic Paddy and Consensus, outstanding performer Scapolo and the highly talented trio of Beefeater, Devise and Savvy Dreams.

   Gates will open at 11am and there is free admission to the racecourse and free access to the Hylton Smith Members Stand.

   The first race is timed for 12.33pm and the last at 4.38pm.

   There will also be free admission to next Thursday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting at Hastings, which will feature the running of the Group 3 $70,000 Little Avondale Lowland Stakes.

   The 2100m event is one of the races in the New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year series and is expected to draw a high class field of three-year-old fillies including the Group 1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas winner Hasahalo, the exciting Cambridge-trained pair of Treasure and Milseain and the Michael and Matthew Pitman trained stablemates Savvy Coup and Pinup Coup.

   The Lowland Stakes has proven to be a tremendous guide to the Group 1 New Zealand Oaks (2400m) to be run at Trentham next month, with the seven of the first four horses home in the last two runnings of the Hastings race going on to fill a first four placing in the Oaks.

   Two years ago Sofia Rosa took out the Lowland in front of Strada Cavallo, Amazing Lady and Fanatic. The following month Sofia Rosa was again first past the post in the Oaks from Fanatic and Strada Cavallo, with the first two placings reversed following an enquiry.

    Last year Bonneval won both the Lowland Stakes and New Zealand Oaks double. Savvy Dreams finished second to her in the Lowland and filled third place in the Oaks while Devise was third in the Hastings race and second in the Oaks. Nicoletta was fourth in both races.

    There will be an eight race programme next Thursday and it will be a twilight affair, with the first race timed for 2.12pm and the last at 6.27pm. The gates will open at 1pm and there will also be free access to the Hylton Smith Members Stand.

 

HB breeder shares in win

   Lubaya, a three-year-old co-bred by Hawke’s Bay’s Doug Phillips, broke through for an impressive maiden win at last Friday’s Wanganui meeting.

   The three-year-old Rip Van Winkle Mare came from near last at the 600 metres to get up and snatch a long neck victory over Detonate over 1360m.

   Lubaya is out of the Generous mare Lioness and was bred by Phillips in partnership with Windsor Park Stud and was sold for $85,000 at the premier session of the 2016 Karaka yearling sales.

   The filly is a half-sister to Lion Tamer, who won six races from the Murray Baker stable including two Group 1 races, the VRC Derby (2500m) and the Underwood Stakes (1800m).

 

Miss Wilson back next week

   Multiple stakes winner Miss Wilson will be back in action on her home course next Thursday.

   The Hastings mare has been freshened since she finished a luckless eighth in the Group 1 Telegraph (1200m) at Trentham last month.

   “She copped a couple of checks and was last at the crossing before she got put off balance again, but that’s Group 1racing,” trainer John Bary said.

   “She ran the third fastest last 600m so under those circumstances it was a good run.”

   The younger half-sister by Stratum to the Hawke’s Bay conditioner’s former champion three-year-old and multiple Group 1 winner Jimmy Choux has won six of her 23 starts.

   Miss Wilson doubled her black type tally in the spring when she was successful in the Group 3 Red Badge Sprint (1400m), having won the Group 3 Cuddle Stakes (1600m) last season.

   “We’ll take the softer option and she’ll run in the open 1400m here at Hastings on March 1 and then we’ll make a plan from there,” Bary said.

   “She could defend her Cuddle title and then maybe look at Te Aroha again.”

   Placed at the recent Foxton trials over 1000m, Miss Wilson ran fourth in the last edition of the Group 1 New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes (1600m) at Te Aroha in April last year.

 

By-monthly award winners

   Megan Harvey and Sam Nelson, the owner-breeders of Kaipawe, are the recipients of the Kevin Wood Memorial by-monthly trophy for December and January.

   The award is presented by the Hawke’s Bay Racehorse Owners Association and Kaipawe won a 1300-metre maiden race at Hastings on December 13 at his third start, after a fourth placing over 1200m on the same track in November.

 

Top mare bound for Brisbane

   Volpe Veloce will chase top Australian honours at the Queensland winter carnival.

   The high-class four-year-old broke through at the highest level during her summer campaign when she won the Group 1Railway (1200m) at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day and was a luckless seventh in the Group 1 Telegraph (1200m) at Trentham in January.

   Her Ellerslie success completed her full house of black type credits following Group Two, Group Three and Listed successes last season.

   Volpe Veloce was given a break after her Telegraph outing and is now back in pre-training.

   Graham Richardson, who trains the mare in partnership with Gavin Parker, said she may have one race here before she goes to Brisbane, where the Stradbroke and the Tatts Tiara will be her main assignments.

   The Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) will be run at Eagle Farm on June 9 with the Group 1 Tatts Tiara (1600m) at the Gold Coast a fortnight later.

 

Brisbane plans for Queen

   The Queensland winter carnival remains firmly on the radar of the multiple stakes winner Prom Queen.

   “She’s fine and she’ll likely kick off in mid-April, there’s a race at Te Rapa for her and a week later one at Doomben, but we’ll give her a trial first and take it from there,” co-trainer Kenny Rae said.

   Prom Queen has won eight of her 11 starts, four of them at black type level, and was fourth last time out in the Group 3 Bonecrusher Stakes (1400m).

   “She had four or five weeks off. She’s come back a bit bigger and stronger,” Rae said.

Hastings Trackwork 22 Feb 2018

   Scandalo rounded off his preparation for his race at Hastings this Saturday with another good workout at this morning’s trackwork session.

   There was very little in the way of fast work, which was confined to the plough (good).

   Scandalo worked in from the 800-metre peg on his own in 52.9, running the first 200 metres in 15.7 and quickening over the last 600 in 37.2. He lines up in the Rating 85 race over 1200 metres on Saturday with apprentice Timothy Johnson booked to ride him.

   A two-year-old gelding by Not A Single Doubt out of Snippins ran an easy 600 metres in 40.5. He is in the Kate Hercock stable and will have a jumpout at Hastings on Friday of next week.

   Savvy Dreams rounded off her preparation for Saturday’s Group 1 Haunui Farm Weight-for-age Classic at Hastings with two rounds of half-pace on the plough. She looks very bright in condition but is dropping back from 2000 metres to 1600 metres on Saturday. Masa Tanaka has been booked to ride her.

   Hunta Pence is another who was just kept to half-pace on the plough. He has been freshened since finishing fourth over 2400 metres at Trentham last month and lines up in the Raukawa Cup (2100m) at Hastings on Saturday, with Chris Johnson booked to ride him.

Hastings Trackwork 21 Feb 2018

   Good solo gallops by Savvy Dreams and Scandalo were the highlights in a reasonably busy trackwork session at Hastings today.

   The majority of fast work was carried out on the plough (good) with just Savvy Dreams given permission to work about five metres out from the running rail on the course proper (dead).

   She worked over 1000 metres in 1:8, the first 400 in a leisurely 29.8 and the last 600 in 38.2. The Savabeel mare looked to be full of running at the end of the gallop and it took track rider Hunter Durrant another 800 metres to pull her up.

   A change of plans will see Savvy Dreams line up in this Saturday’s Group 1 Haunui Farm Weight-for-age (1600m) now that the Otaki meeting has been transferred to Hastings. Originally she wasn’t going to race again until the Group 1 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes (2000m) at Ellerslie on March 10 but she has done so well since finishing fifth in the Herbie Dyke Stakes (2000m) at Te Rapa that her connections are keen to give her another run before then. With Samantha Collett riding at the Matamata meeting on Saturday Masa Tanaka will be reunited with the mare at Hastings. He rode her to her first win on the Hastings track last year.

   Scandalo worked over 800 metres on the plough in 53.5, the last 600 in 37.8 and was also travelling strongly at the finish. He is another horse that has had a change of plans now that the Otaki meeting is at Hastings on Saturday and will contest the Rating 85 race there over 1200 metres.

   Keilib and Peso, two horses from the Paul Nelson stable likely to start at Wairoa next Sunday, worked together over 1200 metres in 1:18.6, the last 600 in 38.4.

   Keilib was a last start fourth in the Woodville Cup (2100m) on January 25 while Peso has been freshened since he was unplaced in the Dunstan Feeds Championship Final (2200m) at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day.

   A Per Incanto two-year-old and one by Roc de Cambes worked together over 600 metres in 38.9 while Tudor Angel ran a solo 1000 metres in 1:10.2, the last 600 in 39.5.

   Riba Mine had trainer Kate Hercock aboard when running 1000 metres, the last 800 in 54.8 and final 600 in 40.2 while Stradivarious was kept to just three-quarter pace when running 600 metres in 46.3.

   A Fastnet Rock two-year-old and a Zacinto three-year-old, both trained by James Bridge, worked easily over 600 metres in 44.6 while Serenity ran the last 600 metres of her work in 45.1.

   A Roc de Cambes three-year-old gelding and a Niagara-Laced Up two-year-old filly worked together at three-quarter pace from the 800-metre peg, the last 600 in 43.

Hastings Trackwork 20 Feb 2018

   Good solo gallops by Savvy Dreams and Scandalo were the highlights in a reasonably busy trackwork session at Hastings today.

   The majority of fast work was carried out on the plough (good) with just Savvy Dreams given permission to work about five metres out from the running rail on the course proper (dead).

   She worked over 1000 metres in 1:8, the first 400 in a leisurely 29.8 and the last 600 in 38.2. The Savabeel mare looked to be full of running at the end of the gallop and it took track rider Hunter Durrant another 800 metres to pull her up.

   A change of plans will see Savvy Dreams line up in this Saturday’s Group 1 Haunui Farm Weight-for-age (1600m) now that the Otaki meeting has been transferred to Hastings. Originally she wasn’t going to race again until the Group 1 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes (2000m) at Ellerslie on March 10 but she has done so well since finishing fifth in the Herbie Dyke Stakes (2000m) at Te Rapa that her connections are keen to give her another run before then. With Samantha Collett riding at the Matamata meeting on Saturday Masa Tanaka will be reunited with the mare at Hastings. He rode her to her first win on the Hastings track last year.

   Scandalo worked over 800 metres on the plough in 53.5, the last 600 in 37.8 and was also travelling strongly at the finish. He is another horse that has had a change of plans now that the Otaki meeting is at Hastings on Saturday and will contest the Rating 85 race there over 1200 metres.

   Keilib and Peso, two horses from the Paul Nelson stable likely to start at Wairoa next Sunday, worked together over 1200 metres in 1:18.6, the last 600 in 38.4.

   Keilib was a last start fourth in the Woodville Cup (2100m) on January 25 while Peso has been freshened since he was unplaced in the Dunstan Feeds Championship Final (2200m) at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day.

   A Per Incanto two-year-old and one by Roc de Cambes worked together over 600 metres in 38.9 while Tudor Angel ran a solo 1000 metres in 1:10.2, the last 600 in 39.5.

   Riba Mine had trainer Kate Hercock aboard when running 1000 metres, the last 800 in 54.8 and final 600 in 40.2 while Stradivarious was kept to just three-quarter pace when running 600 metres in 46.3.

   A Fastnet Rock two-year-old and a Zacinto three-year-old, both trained by James Bridge, worked easily over 600 metres in 44.6 while Serenity ran the last 600 metres of her work in 45.1.

   A Roc de Cambes three-year-old gelding and a Niagara-Laced Up two-year-old filly worked together at three-quarter pace from the 800-metre peg, the last 600 in 43.

Hastings pair now on course for Group 1 races at Ellerslie 14 Feb 2018

   Hastings-trained mare Savvy Dreams is likely to have her next start in the Group 1 $200,000 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes at Ellerslie on March 10 following her game run for fifth in last Saturday’s Herbie Dyke Stakes at Te Rapa.

   The Savabeel mare drew the extreme outside barrier in the 2000m weight-for-age event at Te Rapa and struck unsuitable track conditions, which became a slow-9 after heavy rain fell there on Friday night and again on Saturday.

   Guy Lowry, who trains Savvy Dreams in partnership with Grant Cullen, doubted the mare’s ability to cope with the very wet track conditions, given that all her best form has been on footing rated no worse than dead.

   “I knew she would struggle and I actually thought she would finish further back than she did. But she is one very tough mare and, although she never handled it, she still tried her heart out,” Lowry said.

   The pre-race plan was to hopefully settle Savvy Dreams just behind midfield from her wide draw and then hopefully improve her position starting the last 800 metres. But rider Samantha Collett was almost unseated when the mare ducked sideways as she bounded out of the barrier and she was clear last at end of the first 200 metres.

   Collett said later that, when she tried to urge the mare to go forward in the middle stages, she felt her floundering in the ground and so elected to sit and wait until the home straight to angle her out into slightly better footing.

   Just as Savvy Dreams started to go forward approaching the home turn another runner, Promise To Reign, pushed out inside the mare and shunted her eight-wide rounding the bend. She looked a forlorn hope after that but rallied gamely in the final 300 metres to pick up fifth stakemoney of $8500 for her connections.

   Savvy Dreams was one of two horses the Lowry/Cullen stable lined up in the race, the other being Wait A Sec. He was expected to cope best out of the two in the testing ground but he got stuck down on the inside, in the worst part of the track, and couldn’t quicken at all over the final stages when finishing a distant eighth.

   Lowry said both horses were noticeably very tired immediately after the race but that both returned to normal after a couple of days, with Savvy Dreams back at the Hastings track on Tuesday where she underwent some slow work.

   Lowry said Savvy Dreams won’t have another run again until the Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes, which is also run under weight-for-age conditions over 2000m.

   Meanwhile Wait A Sec is one of a team of horses the Lowry/Cullen team will have campaigning at the upcoming Poverty Bay and Wairoa meetings.

   Wait A Sec will contest the $30,000 Wairoa Cup (2100m) on February 25 and, providing he performs well there, he will also then head to Ellerslie on March 10 for the Group 1 $500,000 Auckland Cup (3200m).

   The annual Poverty Bay meeting will be staged at Gisborne this Sunday while the two-day Wairoa meeting will be on the following Thursday and Sunday.

   Other horses the Lowry/Cullen stable intend to campaign at either Gisborne or Wairoa include Pakapunch, Saint Kitt, Silhouette Beauty, Real Beach, Strut, Tuigold, Uncle Bro, Dare To Rock, Aperol, Deb, Voxer and Rainbowone.

 

Lowland next for Dijon Bleu

   Dijon Bleu has taken a commanding lead in the New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year series following her outstanding win in last Saturday’s Listed $100,000 Cambridge Stud Sir Tristram Fillies Classic (2000m) at Te Rapa.

   The daughter of Burgundy has now amassed 22 points in the series, with second placed Contessa Vanessa on 13.5. Hasahalo is lying third on the table with 12 points and Hello It’s Me is the next best on 8.

   There are three races left in the series, the Group 3 Little Avondale Lowland Stakes (2100m) at Hastings on March 1, the Group 3 McKee Family Sunline Vase (2100m) at Ellerslie on March 3 and the Group 1 Al Basti Equiworld Dubai New Zealand Oaks (2400m) at Trentham on March 17.

   The Lowland Stakes and the Sunline Vase both carry points of six for a win, three for second and 1.5 for third while the points allocated for the New Zealand Oaks are 12 for a win, seven for second and 3.5 for third.

   Dijon Bleu’s Awapuni trainer Lisa Latta said the filly is likely to contest the Lowland Stakes next and a decision on whether or not she then goes on to the Oaks will be made after that.

   Dijon Bleu won the first leg of the series, the Group 3 Gold Trail Stakes (1200m) at Hastings at the beginning of September last year and has been campaigned right through since then. She was subsequently placed in both the Group 1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) at Riccarton and Group 3 Eulogy Stakes (1550m) at Awapuni before posting a dominant victory in the Group 3 Desert Gold Stakes (1600m) at Trentham. She then produced another commanding display at Te Rapa last Saturday in what was her first start beyond 1600m.

   Jockey Jonathan Riddell, who was replacing the suspended Leith Innes, settled Dijon Bleu midfield and bided his time, waiting for the gaps to appear in the home straight. They managed to get a split between horses 300 metres out and Dijon Bleu showed an amazing turn of foot to sprint clear and then hold out the fast finishing Mark Two by three-quarters of a length.

 

Boxachocolates weighted out

   The connections of Boxachocolates have sent the lightly-tried stayer to Australia for a sweeter future.

   They believe the Alamosa five-year-old has become too difficult to place in New Zealand and he has headed to Melbourne where he will be trained by Stephen Brown at Flemington.

   “I’ve got 25 horses and we looked after Boxachocolates and now he’s gone instead of running in our cup races,” former trainer Mike Breslin said.

   “There’s been no falling out between the owners and I and I don’t blame them the way things are.”

   The trans-Tasman move was prompted following Boxachocolates’ win off a 54kg minimum at Awapuni in December.

   “There wasn’t a Rating 85 for him so we had to run in the Cup Prelude, a $35,000 race and he got 17 points – that was only the fourth win of his life,” Breslin said.

   “Authentic Paddy, a Group One winner, and Ocean Emperor, who won the Group 2 at Tauranga, were in the field, but the handicapper didn’t use any discretion and my horse went from the minimum to 58.5kg.”

   Boxachocolates was unplaced in the Group 3 Manawatu Cup (2100m) a week later when on a rating of 88.

   “I rang Racing Victoria and said to them that I was considering bringing the horse over and they said he would be rated 78,” Breslin said.

   “When I relayed that to the owners it wasn’t really a surprise they decided to send him to a Melbourne trainer.”

 

Ugo Foscolo back in NZ

   Group One winner Ugo Foscolo will be back on track tomorrow week.

   “He was going to trial at Matamata this week, but they were cancelled, so he’ll go straight to the open 1200m on Matamata Cup day,” trainer Stephen Marsh said. “He looks great and it’s great to have him back.”

   Marsh prepared Ugo Foscolo won his first three starts in New Zealand in 2016, including the El Roca Three-year-old Sprint (1200m) at Hastings. He then went on to take out the Group 2 Sarten Memorial (1400m) at Te Rapa and the Group 1 New Zealand 2000 Guineas (1600m) at Riccarton, before the son of Zacinto transferred to the Sydney stable of Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott.

   Muscle soreness restricted him to just one unplaced run in Australia before he returned home.

 

Aussie coming for Derby

   Australian-trained three-year-old has been confirmed as a likely starter in the Group 1 $1million Vodafone New Zealand Derby at Ellerslie on March 3.

   The Darren Weir-trained colt is the winner of four races from only 10 starts and scored an effortless 2-3/4 length victory in the Listed Tasmanian Derby (2200m) last Friday. He was also successful over 2000m at Flemington on New Year’s Day.

   New Zealand-bred Civil Disobedience is by Raise The Flag out of Pernote and was a $32,500 purchase from a 2016 South Island sale when offered from the draft from White Robe Lodge.

 

Jasd bound for Hong Kong

   Unbeaten three-year-old gelding Jasd will be making his way to Hong Kong after being sold by Waikato bloodstock agent Bryce Tankard to clients of expatriate New Zealand trainer Paul O’Sullivan.

   Formerly trained by Tony Pike, Jasd won impressively on debut at Taupo by nearly 2 lengths late last year before winning his only other start over 1400m at Trentham on Wellington Cup day.

   Jasd was originally purchased by Tankard out of the 2016 New Zealand Bloodstock Ready to Run Sale. He went to $240,000 to secure the son of Sepoy out of Kilgravin Lodge’s draft for another Hong Kong client.

   “He’s a horse that has always shown plenty of ability and we just took him along quietly because he is a lovely big horse and we didn’t want to rush him,” Tankard said.

   “The current owner didn’t have a permit for Hong Kong and he has sold a few horses up to Hong Kong that have gone on to do very good jobs. So he is always open to the deal of moving a few horses.”

One Prize One Goal back in tune with Matamata win 7 Feb 2018

   Cambridge trainer Lee Somervell was back singing the praises of One Prize One Goal after the Hawke’s Bay-owned four-year-old showed a dramatic form reversal to win at last Friday’s Matamata meeting.

   The Ekraar four-year-old was a shade slow to begin in a Rating 65 race over 1200m but, after travelling easily in fourth place to the home turn, he showed a great turn of foot in the home straight to race clear for a 1-1/4 length victory.

   The performance was in stark contrast to the horse’s previous start, over 1500m at Ellerslie on Boxing Day, where he showed an aversion to the right-handed track. He charged into the 600-metre bend that day and ran off, losing all chance despite jockey Trudy Thornton’s attempts to try and keep him on course.

   Somervell has long held One Prize One Goal in high regard and was both mystified and disappointed by the horse’s Ellerslie run.

   “He just didn’t seem to like going that way round that day and actually pulled a muscle in his neck which was caused by Trudy trying to stop him running off,” Somervell said.

   Somervell had the neck injury treated and gave the horse a freshen up before reverting him back to a left-handed track at Matamata, where he bounced back to his best in no uncertain terms.

   One Prize One Goal has now recorded two wins, three seconds and two thirds from only 13 starts. He is raced by Hawke’s Bay woman Shirin Wood along with her son Calvin and the estate of her late husband Kevin.

   The Woods bred the horse out of the Towkay mare Sheeza Kinda Magic.

   The family are huge fans of the rock group Queen and wanted to call the mare It’s A Kinda Magic after the band’s number one hit but that name had already been taken.

   “So we had to go with Sheeza Kinda Magic, which is pretty close,” Shirin Wood said.

   “There is a line in the song that goes It’s A Kinda Magic...One Prize One Goal which is where this horse’s name comes from and his stable name is Freddy, after the band’s lead singer Freddy Mercury.”

   One Prize One Goal is only the second horse to race out of the mare Sheeza Kinda Magic, the other being Jakob Gambino (by Sandtrap) who is the winner of four races for the Woods and is still racing as a nine-year-old in the South Island, recording a last start second over 1335m at Gore on January 20.

   Sheeza Kinda Magic is now back in foal to Ekraar.

                          

A princess on the racetrack

   There are not many racemares in commission that try as hard as Waipukurau-trained Royal Ruby.

   The five-year-old daughter of Per Incanto capped off two good third placings with a decisive 1-3/4 length win in a Rating 65 race over 2000m at Hastings on Thursday of last week. She then backed up five days later and, competing out of her grade, she turned in another gutsy run for third in the Wairarapa Cup, a Rating 85 race over 2050m at Tauherenikau.

   Royal Ruby is trained by the husband and wife team of Tony and Penny Ebbett. She is no superstar, with only two wins from 33 starts, but she has also recorded four seconds and six thirds and has rarely run a bad race.

   The country’s leading jockey Samantha Collett was aboard the mare at Hastings last week and took her straight to the front from the outset. She then dictated terms in front and was able to kick clear early in the home straight and pinch a winning break on the opposition.

   Chris Johnson was aboard Royal Ruby at Tauherenikau on Tuesday. The mare wanted to over-race in the early stages but the experienced jockey got her to settle just in behind the leaders.

   She looked under pressure rounding the home turn but then rallied again late to finish just over 3 lengths from the winner.

   Tony Ebbett is the course manager at Waipukurau and he and his wife Penny are hobby trainers, never having more than one or two horses in work at a time. Their best has been Belfast Lad, whose 12 wins included a Foxton Cup (2040m) at Wanganui.

   They race Royal Ruby on lease from her Hastings breeders, John and Colleen Duncan. The mare won her first race at Waipukurau in March last year, when ridden by Chris Johnson.

 

Significant win by Pep Torque

   Waipukurau trainer Kirsty Lawrence and her husband Steve look to have picked up another bargain in Pep Torque, who broke through for a maiden win at just his second start at Tuesday’s Tauherenikau meeting.

   The Lawrences bought the Nadeem four-year-old from the thoroughbred trading operation Gavelhouse for just $2600 and he has now picked up $7250 in stakemoney from a third and a win.

   The Lawrences are racing Pep Torque in partnership with their stable employee Susan Best and the sisters Diana and Christina Newman, who have been long time stable clients.

   Kirsty Lawrence said she was confident of a big run from Pep Torque in Tuesday’s 1000m maiden race at Tauherenikau following his debut third over the same distance at Trentham.

   “He went a really good race first up and we were pretty confident after he worked very well here on Saturday.”

   Pep Torque’s win held special significance for Kirsty Lawrence. Her best friend’s husband committed suicide last Sunday after battling depression and jockey Alysha Collett wore a blue armband when riding the horse on Tuesday to signify suicide awareness.

   Collett positioned Pep Torque perfectly one out and one back in the running before angling him around heels at the top of the home straight to lodge a challenge. The horse kicked on strongly to score by three-quarters of a length from race favourite Stumpy, with first starter Torre Del Greco a short head back in third.

   Collett was suitably impressed by Pep Torque’s performance and predicted a bright future for the horse. He is now likely to head to the Wairoa meeting later this month for a Rating 65 race over 1200m.

   Pep Torque is by Nadeem out of the Star Way mare Cosmic Flight, who recorded two wins and seven minor placings from only 20 starts.

   Coincidentally Cosmic Flight’s first win was also in a maiden 1000m race at the exact same Tauherenikau meeting back in 2001.

   Kirsty Lawrence presently has six horses in work and said four of them are being aimed at the upcoming two day Wairoa meeting. They include Do Ya, who was the winner of two races last year, and Martinelli who is a three-year-old filly by Burgundy and another buy from Gavelhouse at just $2200.

 

Magnum back in NZ

   Magnum, a horse part-owned by Havelock North’s Jason Fleming, has returned from racing in Singapore and will be aimed at black type races in this country this season.

   The five-year-old Per Incanto gelding, who was bred by part-owners Little Avondale Stud, won four races in Singapore and was successful in a 935m trial at Cambridge on Monday for trainer Lauren Brennan.

   “He had trouble with his joints up there so the connections decided to bring him back here and so far he’s a really happy horse,” she said.

   “If he pulls up well, we’ll look at a Rating 85 over 1200m at Ellerslie on February 17 and then there’s the option of the Darley Plate.

   “We had him as a two-year-old and he had three trials for three wins. He’s always been a classy horse.”

 

Sound trial by Bonneval

   Outstanding mare Bonneval trialled well at Cambridge on Monday to take her a step closer to opening an autumn campaign in Australia.

   The multiple Group 1 winner finished third in her 1200m heat behind stablemates Saint Emilion and Weather With You.

   “She ran on nicely and she probably needs another trial before she races in Sydney over a mile in the Chipping Norton,” said Murray Baker, who trains with Andrew Forsman.

   Bonneval won the Group 3 Little Avondale Lowland Stakes (2100m) at Hastings in March of last year before going out to take out both the Group 1 New Zealand Oaks (2400m) at Trentham and the Group 1 ATC Oaks (2400m) in Sydney. She also won the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) in Melbourne during the spring.

 

Gingernuts returns home

   Multiple Group 1 winner Gingernuts was on a flight back to New Zealand from Australia this week.

   The son of Iffraaj fractured a pastern on the way to the barrier for the Gr.1 Emirates Stakes (2000m) at Flemington in the spring and underwent surgery at the University of Melbourne Veterinary Clinic at Werribee before being transferred to the nearby King’s Park Equine Clinic.

   He will continue his rehabilitation at Te Akau Stud in New Zealand with no indication yet whether he will race again.

Hastings Trackwork 6 Feb 2018

Savvy Dreams, preparing for Saturday’s Group 1 Herbie Dyke Stakes at Te Rapa, strode out well in her final serious gallop at today’s Hastings track session.

   There was very little in the way of fast work with most horses only undergoing pacework.

   Savvy Dreams worked with Kaipawe about five metres out on the course proper, which provided good footing. They worked in from the 1200-metre peg and started to stretch out over the last 1000 metres.

   Savvy Dream finished in front of her companion and clocked 1:3.2, the last 600 in 34.2. It was excellent work from the Savabeel mare who looks to have trained on extra well since her last start fourth in the Group 1 Thorndon Mile at Trentham. Samantha Collett will retain the mount in Saturday’s 2000-metre feature.

   Last start winner Tavijazz worked on the plough (good) and ran a solo 1000 metres in 1:7.9, the last 600 in 37.6. She may race next at either the Poverty Bay meeting on February 18 or at Wairoa the following week.

   A Super Easy-Gold two-year-old filly in the Lowry/Cullen stable was kept to just three-quarter pace, running her last 600 metres in 45.6.

Two fillies show out at Hastings jumpouts 2 Feb 2018

   A three-year-old filly by Jimmy Choux and a two-year-old filly by Rip Van Winkle produced eye-catching performances at today’s Hastings jumpouts.

   There were five heats held up against the running rail on the course proper, where the footing was good.

   The two fillies contested the first of the three 750-metre heats and finished first and second. The Jimmy Choux three-year-old is trained by John Bary and flew the gates to be a clear lead at the end of the first 100 metres. She never looked like being headed from there, cruising to the line for a 6 length win. It was a very professional performance.

  The Rip Van Winkle filly is prepared by Patrick Campbell and was having her first jumpout. She was slow to get into full stride but made up many lengths in the home straight and was doing her best work at the finish. She is well bred, being out of the Redoute’s Choice mare Dorotea Dior.

   Matt Cain clocked the fastest time of the three 750-metre heats when winning by three-quarters of a length from the more experienced Van Halen in 45.4s. He is an unraced four-year-old by Danroad trained by Sue Thompson and Mick Brown.

 

Results.-

Heat 1, 400m: Rip Van Winkle 2yr-old filly (M Stowe) 1, Jimmy Choux 2yr-old filly 2, Not A Single Doubt-Snippins 2yr-old gelding 3. Four starters. Margins: Neck, 1 length. Time: 29.3s. Winner trained by John Bary, Hastings.

Heat 2, 750m: Jimmy Choux 3yr-old filly (Z Thomson) 1, Rip Van Winkle 2yr-old filly 2, Excelebration 2yr-old gelding 3. Five starters. Margins: 6 lengths, ½ length. Time: 46.7s. Winner trained by John Bary, Hastings.

Heat 3, 750m: Dellarosa (M Stowe) 1, Sincerity Road 2, Happy Hitter 3. Four starters. Margins: ½ length, ¾ length. Time: 45.9s. Winner trained by John Bary, Hastings.

Heat 4, 750m: Matt Cain (M Tanaka) 1, Van Halen 2, Fun Seeker 3. Four starters. Margins: ¾ length, 1-1/4 lengths. Time: 45.4s. Winner trained by Sue Thompson & Mick Brown, Hastings.

Heat 5, 1000m: Voxer (H Durrant) 1, The Cossack 2, Worldclass 3. Five starters. Margins: ¾ length, 1 length. Time: 1:02.7. Winner trained by Guy Lowry & Grant Cullen, Hastings.

Perseverance pays off with win by Tavijazz 1 Feb 2018

  The win by Tavijazz at last week’s Woodville meeting was likened to a triumph over adversity by the horse’s Hastings co-owner Chris Russell.

   The six-year-old mare was not only recording her first win when getting up to snatch a half-head victory in a maiden 1200m event but she also credited Hastings-based Corrina McDougal with her first training success for more than three years.

   McDougal has unfortunately had to battle debilitating health issues in recent years. She has undergone one kidney transplant and is still undergoing regular dialysis treatment.

   However it has not stopped her from fulfilling her life-long ambition to be involved with thoroughbreds, whether she be training them or just riding work.

   “Corrina has been amazing with what she has been able to do considering her health issues,” Chris Russell said.

   “My brother Ken and I bred and race Tavijazz and we are both over the moon that Corrina has been able to get a win with the horse.

   “She has done all the work on this horse and to do what she has done, given her health problems, is a real inspiration to others.”

    McDougal’s last winner was when Rule The Court took out a 1600m maiden race at Hastings in August 2014. She has not had many horses in work since then and Tavijazz is the only horse she has racing at the moment.

   McDougal has trained 17 winners since taking out her licence 10 years ago and had her best season in 2010-11 when she picked up five wins from only 22 starters.

   She broke new ground with the win by Tavijazz as it was her the first time she had trained a horse to win at a distance less than 1600m. And she only made it on course 15 minutes before the horse was due to be saddle up after first riding work for Hastings trainer Paul Nelson at his Air Hill Stud property on State Highway 50 beforehand.

   Tavijazz was having only her seventh race when successful at Woodville and it was her first start since she was unplaced over 1400m at Hastings more than six months ago.

   The country’s leading jockey Samantha Collett picked up the ride on the mare after original rider Chris Johnson had to fulfil engagements at the Otago meeting on the same day.

   Tavijazz drew the extreme outside barrier but Collett managed to position her well, in fourth place, and bided her time until making a move just before the home turn. They ranged up to vie for the lead at the top of the home straight and Tavijazz kicked on strongly in the run to the line to win by half a head from Sligo, with third placed Drum Rise only a long head back.

   Tavijazz is by the highly successful sire Tavistock out of the Hey Baba Riba mare Whistling Jazz, who won one race from 14 starts, and is a half-sister to the three race winner Between The Beats.

 

Million dollar baby

   Not many racehorse owners can say that they have won a $1million race but Waipukurau’s Michael Ormsby did just that when Avantage took out the Karaka Million Two-year-old Classic at Ellerslie last Saturday.

   Ormsby and his wife Helen have been involved in racehorse ownership for many years and have the distinction of sharing in the ownership of eight winners of either the Grand National Steeplechase or Grand National Hurdles.

   Michael Ormsby brought up his fifth National success when Upper Cut recorded back-to-back wins in the Grand National Steeplechase at Riccarton in August last year. He also shared in the ownership of Counter Punch, who also recorded back-to-back Grand National Steeplechase wins in 2010 and 2011 as well as a triumph in the 2007 Grand National Hurdles.

   Helen Ormsby is a member of the I See Red Syndicate, which races a number of horses from the Hastings stable of Paul Nelson. One of them was Just A Swagger, who won back-to-back Grand National Hurdles in 2004-2005 and the Grand National Steeples in 2008.

   Avantage is owned by the Te Akau Avantage Syndicate, a large group of people that have been brought together by Te Akau principal David Ellis after he purchased the filly for $210,000 at last year’s Karaka yearling sales.

   Michael Ormsby says he has been involved with Te Akau syndicates for the past two years and has enjoyed six wins in the past few months. Avantage is now unbeaten in four starts while Irish Cream is another promising filly who has had one start for a win while Gris Dame is also the winner of one race and finished third in the Group 2 $100,000 Eight Carat Classic (1600m) at Ellerslie on Boxing Day.

   “I can’t speak too highly of the Te Akau syndicates,” Michael Ormsby said.

   “It’s a tremendous outfit to deal with. No one knows who all the members are in each syndicate but we get emails just about every day keeping you informed on where the horses are at and where they are racing.

   “I love racing and this is a great way to keep involved.”

 

Has the family ability

   An impressive debut win by Valalie in the two-year-old race at Pukekohe last Friday was a timely result for her Hawke’s Bay owners.

   The Snitzel filly is owned by Kayano Limited, a company set up by Havelock North’s Murray Andersen. He and his wife Jo are shareholders in the company along with their daughter Tracy and her husband Gavin Chaplow.

   Valalie is out of the Volksraad mare Vaayala who was the winner of only one race, at Hastings back in January 2012, but is a half-sister to the champion galloper and now successful sire Dundeel.

   Kayano Limited has a yearling full-brother to Valalie entered for the upcoming Sydney Easter sales and the mare now has a filly foal at foot by Redoute’s Choice.

   “We have a plan to keep the fillies and sell the colts so Valalie’s win last week could not have come at a better time with her full-brother going to the Sydney sales,” Murray Andersen said this week.

   Valalie is prepared by the Cambridge partnership of Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman. She had only had one official barrier trial before making her race debut, that resulting in a fourth out of nine starters in an 800m heat at Cambridge on January 9. But she turned in a very professional performance over 1200m at Pukekohe, trailing the leaders until the home turn before racing clear in the final stages to win by 1-1/2 lengths.

   “Murray said she is a very good filly in the making and her next start will now be in the Group 3 Matamata Breeders Stakes on February 24.”

     

Back in winning form

   It has been a long time between celebration drinks for the connections of Perfect Shock but the Hastings-trained five-year-old showed his true ability with a strong win in a Rating 65 race over 1400m at Woodville last week.

   It was the horse’s second success and his first since he took out a 1300m maiden race at Tauherenikau in January last year but he had been three times placed in the interim.

   Perfect Shock is prepared by Hastings trainer John Bary, who purchased him for $60,000 at the 2014 Read To Run Two-year-old sale at Karaka.

   His dam is the Pompeii Court mare Etna Court, who won seven races including the Listed North Canterbury Stakes.

   Perfect Shock is now raced by the Court Racing Syndicate, with the members being John O’Sullivan, Ian and Maggie McGarvie, Colleen and Helen Francis, Richard Koorey, Ivan Grieve, Paul and Marilyn Yortt, Andrew Bayly, Brett Wilkinson and Campbell Bary.

   All but two of the members reside in Hawke’s Bay with Bary’s father Campbell living in Marton and Brett Wilkinson in Auckland.

   Perfect Shock was ridden to victory last week by Dylan Turner, who bounced the horse out quickly to be a clear leader in the first 30 metres taking a hold to settle him just off the pace. They were wide rounding the home turn but Perfect Shock quickly dashed to the front and held on to score by a long neck from Tipping Point.

 

Hunta Pence’s dip proved costly

   Fears that Hastings galloper Hunta Pence may have broken down in the final 100 metres of his race at Trentham last Saturday have been allayed with the horse having pulled up without any issues.

   Hunta Pence was fighting out the finish of the $30,000 Rating 85 2400m race at the Wellington meeting when he suddenly dipped badly and lost all momentum, drifting back to fourth place at the finish.

   Hastings trainer Patrick Campbell and jockey Mark Hills were both left mystified as to why the horse suddenly faltered but a relieved Campbell said this week the horse seems to be perfectly sound.

   “I thought he’d broken down for sure the way he dipped right down but he seems to be normal,” Campbell said.

    Campbell is now contemplating aiming the horse at the $30,000 Wairoa Cup (2100m) on February 25.

 

 

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