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Debut winner Okie Dokie off to Hong Kong 26 Sep 2012


   Promising Hastings-trained galloper Okie Dokie has been sold to Hong Kong for an undisclosed six-figure sum and plans are for him to be aimed at this season’s Hong Kong Derby.

   The Sandtrap four-year-old gelding was trained by James Bridge and owned by him in partnership with his father John.  He had one race in New Zealand, scoring an impressive 2-1/4 length win in the 1200-metre special conditions handicap on the first day of the Hawke’s Bay spring carnival on September 1.

   The horse was among the entries for a $20,000 Special Conditions 1300 at last Saturday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting but withdrawn once the sale had been confirmed. He is likely to spend the next month on a stud farm in the north before boarding a flight to Hong Kong in November.

   Okie Dokie was bred by Takapau’s Craig Harvey and Taradale’s Duncan MacLean in partnership with Australian-based Tim Morris. They sold the horse to the Bridges as a weanling.

   His dam Pennies In Heaven is a Pompeii Court mare who won five races and has also left the six-race winner Single Currency (by Bachelor Duke). Since Okie Dokie was born she has left a yearling filly by St Reims and is due to foal this year to Stravinsky.

   James Bridge said he was sorry to lose Okie Dokie from his stable but the offer was too good to turn down. The sale was negotiated by Central Districts bloodstock agent Phil Cataldo.


Dundeel makes if four from four

   Exciting Hawke’s Bay-owned galloper Dundeel added to his unbeaten record with another impressive win in Saturday’s Group 3 $200,000 Gloaming Stakes (1800m) at Randwick in Sydney.

   It was the three-year-old’s fourth win from as many starts and his first black type success. Rider James McDonald settled the High Chaparral colt at the tail of the seven horse field until the home turn and the horse unleashed a powerful sprint down the outside of the track in the last 300 metres to win by 1-1/4 lengths. It was his first start beyond 1600 metres.

   Dundeel, or It’s a Dundeel as he is known in Australia, is trained by Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman at Cambridge. He is raced by the Transtasman Syndicate, a group set up by the horse’s Havelock North breeder Murray Andersen. He and his wife Jo have retained a 20 per cent shareholding. Their daughter Tracy and her husband Gavin Chaplow have a 10 per cent share as do two other Havelock North couples, Mike and Sharon Craig and Dave and Jenny Morrison.

   The other 50 per cent shareholding is split between Tony Muollo (Wellington), Tony and Jenny Joyce (Wellington), Max and Jo Brown (Wellington), Dino and Ange Focas (Gold Coast) and Tony and Jana Muollo (Sydney).

   Baker said Dundeel will now be stepped up in distance again in the Group 1 $A400,000 Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on October 6 and then be aimed at the $A1.5million Victorian Derby (2500m) at Flemington on November 3.

   Baker prepared the ill-fated Lion Tamer to win the VRC Derby two years ago.


Fresh up win for Miss Lioness

   The Hastings partnership of Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen pulled off a great training feat when they produced Miss Lioness to win over 1350 metres at Gisborne last Thursday in her first race for 17 months.

   The Johar mare came from a midfield position on the home turn to score an easy three-quarter length victory in a Rating 75 event, her third success from just nine starts.

   Miss Lioness recorded two wins in the space of three starts at the beginning of last year and then tackled the Group 2 Travis Stakes (2000m) at Te Rapa. She finished near the tail of the field in that race but was hampered several times in the running.

   She then suffered a ricked joint in a leg and had to be spelled for 12 months before undergoing a long slow build up back to race fitness. She had been given only one barrier trial, over 1000 metres at Foxton last month, to fit her for last Thursday’s race.

   The six-year-old is certainly bred to be good as she is a half-sister to the 2010 Victorian Derby winner Lion Tamer, who was the winner of six races from just 15 starts but who had to be destroyed after breaking down in last year’s Cox Plate (2040m) in Melbourne.

   Miss Lioness is part-owned by Hastings man Gareth Arnold, who races the mare in partnership with Wellington’s Andre Neill and Cambridge-based Tony Rider.

   Guy Lowry said Miss Lioness will now be aimed at the Group 3 $70,000 Thompson Handicap (1600m) at Trentham on October 27 in the hope that she may be able to pick up some black type to enhance her future value as a broodmare.


First hurdle success

   Hastings-trained jumper No Quota capped off three minor placings with a game win in the longest hurdle race in the country at last Wednesday’s Rotorua-Bay Of Plenty Hunt meeting at Rotorua.

   The Kingfisher Mill eight-year-old contested the 4400-metre Team Weallens Hurdles and outstayed his six rivals to score by three-quarters of a length, his first success in 13 starts.

   The race is significantly longer than both the Grand National Hurdles (4200m) run at Riccarton last month and the Great Northern Hurdles (4190m) run at Ellerslie earlier this month.

   No Quota is trained at Hastings by Paul Nelson and raced by him in partnership with his wife Carol. They bred the gelding out of the Victory Dance mare All Magic and he had recorded a second and two thirds from five previous hurdle starts.

Windsor Park Plate Day Review 22 Sep 2012



Sunshine, a good track and some of the country’s most exciting race horses drew an enthusiastic crowd to the second day of the Rush Munro Hawke’s Bay Spring Carnival.

In the feature race, the $200,000 Group 1 Windsor Park Plate, Mufhasa put to rest any doubts about his ability at 8 years old by dominating from the second the gates opened.

The Pentire gelding comfortably held out challenges from Fleur de Lune and Xanadu to claim his tenth Group 1.

The win puts him among a select group of Australasian horses to have reached double figures in terms of group 1 wins, including Kingston Town, Sunline, Tie The Knot, Black Caviar, Lonhro, Rough Habit and Octagonal.

Mufhasa was second to Jimmy Choux in the Windsor Park Plate last year and went on to win the Group 1 Toorak Handicap at Caulfield. He looks destined to follow the same path this season and is likely to come up against Australian champion More Joyous.

In the other feature race at Hastings, the Group 3 Hawke’s Bay Breeders Gold Trail Stakes, Pure Elegance edged out Roll Out the Carpet and Waterford in what was only her second start.

The well-bred Redoute’s Choice filly is nominated for both the 1000 and 2000 Guineas at Canterbury in November.

A particularly pleasing result for Hawke’s Bay Racing at the weekend was Ocean Park’s win in the group 1 Underwood Stakes at Caulfield.

It followed his impressive win in the Group 1 Makfi Stakes at Hastings three weeks earlier, and cemented him as one of the favourites for the Cox Plate on October 27.

Hawke’s Bay Racing now looks forward to the third and final day of the carnival on October 6, which features the Group 1, $300,000 New Zealand Bloodstock Insurance Spring Classic, Group 2 DHL Global Hawke’s Bay Guineas, and Group 3 TradeRacks Stakes.

Trackwork 20 Sep 2012


Outback Girl turned in another pleasing gallop at this morning’s Hastings track session in preparation for the Rating 85 1400-metre race at Saturday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting.

   Fast work was confined to the plough, which was again in good order and conducive to fast times.

   A penetrometer reading was taken on the course proper during the session and came up as a good-3, after light irrigation on Tuesday and yesterday.

   Outback Girl worked in from the 1000-metre peg on the plough in 1:6, speeding up over the last 600 in 36.5. She looks to have improved since her seventh placing on the first day of the Hawke’s Bay spring carnival.

   Time honours for the morning went to Huarwee, who clocked 47.8 for the last 800 metres of his work, the final 600 in 35.6. He turned in a good race for second over 1400 metres at Woodville last week.

   Whoopi Gee rounded off her preparation for the Rating 65 1400 at Hastings on Saturday by running an easy 1000 metres in 1:7.7, coming home the last 600 in 37.9. Promising apprentice Miranda Dravitzki has been booked to ride her.

   Second Hope, who takes on the open sprinters over 1200 metres on Saturday, working in at three-quarter pace from the 800 and ran home the last 600 in 37.7.

   Bolt Action, another entered for the Rating 65 1400 at Hastings, ran a solo 1000 metres in 1:8.6, the last 600 in 37.5. He has a wide draw to overcome on Saturday.

   Orchidium, who steps up in distance in the Rating 65 2200-metre race, worked in from the 800-metre peg and ran home the last 600 in 37.6.

   Zip ran a solo 1000 metres in 1:7.6, the last 600 in 38 while Leah Maria went easily over the same distance in 1:10.2, the last 600 in 39.7.

   An Any Suggestion-Melanie three-year-old filly clocked 55.7 for 800 metres, the last 600 in 40.6. She is a younger half-sister to The Knight.

Trackwork 18 Sep 2012


Fast 1000-metre gallops by Intransigent and Traptheboyz were the highlights at this morning’s Hastings track session.

   Fast work was confined to the plough, which was conducive to fast times.

   Intransigent had trainer Kirsty Lawrence aboard when running a strong 1000 metres in 1:1, the last 600 in 35.6. The Refuse To Bend gelding is holding his condition well after a busy campaign and will start next in either the open 2000-metre race at Hawke’s Bay this Saturday or in an open 2200-metre event at Ellerslie the following Saturday. Lawrence said she would also like to run the Refuse To Bend gelding in the weight-for-age Group 1 NZ Bloodstock Insurance Spring Classic (2040m) at Hastings on October 6.

   Traptheboyz also had her trainer, Theoni Morgan, aboard when she also clocked 1:1 for 1000 metres, the last 600 in 35.9. The Sandtrap mare has only performed fair in her three starts to date but this latest work could be a pointer to better things.

   Outback Girl, a likely starter in the $30,000 Rating 85 1400 at Hastings on Saturday, is another who worked well this morning. She was timed to run home the last 800 metres of a solo gallop in 50.1, the last 600 in 36.4 and was stretching out well at the finish.

   Just As Well had blinkers on when working on his own over 1000 metres in 1:10.6, the last 600 in 40 while Orchidium worked over the same ground in 1:6.9, the last 600 in 38.3.

   Mackinaw, another from the Kirsty Lawrence stable, sprinted a fast 800 metres in 49.2, the last 600 in 36.8 while a Mr Nancho four-year-old mare trained by Corrina McDougal sprinted a quick 600 metres in 35.4.

   Whoopi Gee was not after a fast time when running 1000 metres in 1:7, the last 600 in 39.7. She will be entered for the Rating 65 1400 at Hastings on Saturday.

   The Depot, who makes his race debut at Gisborne on Thursday, ran an easy 600 metres in 38.9 while Ambitious Beauty worked over 800 metres in 53.6, the last 600 in 39.3.

   A Perfectly Ready three-year-old gelding trained by David Hayes clocked 52.5 for 800 metres, the last 600 in 38.4 while Leah Maria and Lucky Cat, two horses trained by James Bridge, recorded 1:8.1 for 1000 metres, the last 600 in 40.6.

   Mahora Gold and a Perfectly Ready three-year-old filly worked over 800 metres together, coming home the last 600 in 38.

   A Keeper full-sister to The Innkeeper and a Fast ‘N’ Famous-Jelignite Gem three-year-old gelding worked in at three-quarter pace from the 800-metre peg and quickened slightly over the last 600 in 42.5.

Chapinta proving a bargain buy for her connections 18 Sep 2012


  Chapinta, a horse bought for just $2000 as an outcast two years ago, is turning into a goldmine for her connections and took a step towards a possible start in this year’s $225,000 New Zealand Cup with another gutsy win at last Saturday’s Marton meeting.

   The High Chaparral mare completed a winning hat-trick and made it four victories from just six starts with a strong performance in a $15,000 Rating 85 race over 2100 metres.

   Having her first race for six weeks, Chapinta got to the front a lot sooner than her connections would have liked but kept up a sustained run to score by a length from Destiny Cove, with equal topweight Double O Seven half a length back in third place.

   Chapinta is trained at Cambridge by Craig Thornton and owned by well known Hawke’s Bay identity Peter Grieve in partnership with Christchurch-based Barry Thomas.

   Thomas was one of the original owners of the six-year-old when she was first put into work in a South Island stable. But the horse was constantly troubled by injuries so the syndicate decided to quit her.

   “They thought they had her sold for $4000 but the money never came through,” recalled Peter Grieve.

   “I said to Barry to offer them $2000 and we would race her together.”

   Chapinta’s value skyrockted when her half-brother Sangster, by Savabeel, won last year’s Group 1 VRC Derby (2500m) in Melbourne, recording his third success. He has since been stakes placed again, finishing third in the Group 2 Alister Clark Stakes (2040m) at Moonee Valley in March.

   At that stage Chapinta was still unraced and she had her first start, as a five-year-old, in a 1560-metre race at Te Awamutu in May of this year. She only managed sixth that day but has gone from strength to strength since.

   Cambridge jockey Tasha Collett has ridden Chapinta in all four of her wins and made a special trip to Awapuni on Saturday to stick with the horse, in what was her only ride for the day.

   Collett said she was worried she may have got to the front too soon when Chapinta capitalised on an inside run to kick clear at the top of the home straight.

   “But she’s a really game mare and kept going right to the line.”

   Grieve said Chapinta holds a nomination for the New Zealand Cup (3200m) at Riccarton on November 17 but much depends on the weather before now and then.

   “If the track was too firm we wouldn’t go down there. She has to have it soft,” he added.


Mr Mor jumps again today

   Exciting Hawke’s Bay-owned jumper Mr Mor starts again over hurdles at Rotorua today as he attempts to win his third race from his last four starts.

   The Corrupt gelding followed up a debut win over steeples at Hawera on August 30 with a maiden hurdle victory at Woodville last Tuesday and contests the $12,000 restricted open hurdle event over 4300 metres at today’s Rotorua & Bay Of Plenty Hunt meeting.

   Four starts back the eight-year-old had been an easy winner over 2000 metres on the flat at the Grand National meeting at Riccarton and he has now won six races in total.

   Mr Mor’s Wanganui trainer, Kevin Myers, had the horse entered for another steeplechase race at Awapuni last Saturday but decided to wait until Rotorua.

   “The hurdle race there will probably suit him a bit more,” Myers said on Saturday.

   “He’s a good stayer and should handle the distance.”

    Mr Mor is raced by the Bogga Syndicate, a group of mainly Hawke’s Bay people. The horse was bred by the late Brian Denton, whose nickname was “Bogga”. His widow Dianne Denton and her daughter Symone Stevens are members of the syndicate, with the others being Tony Lyndon, Greg Horton, Peter Unverricht, Pat and Sheryl Watson, Peter Johnson, Ray Morgan, Brian Hunter, Brad Whitfield, Stefan Kara and Christchurch-based Paul Kavanagh.


Age proving no handicap

   Not many horses are still winning races on the flat at 10 years of age but Waipukurau owned and trained Turn On D’Light managed to do so at last week’s Woodville meeting.

   The noted mudlark revelled in the heavy-10 track conditions, leading all the way for a 2-3/4 length victory in a Rating 65 1600-metre event.

   It was the Woodbury Lad gelding’s sixth win and his first since October last year.

  Turn On D’Light is trained by David Williams, who races the horse in partnership with his wife Phillippa. They bred him out of the Alleged Dash mare All A’Light, who unfortunately died in 2003 when in foal again to Woodbury Lad.

   Williams backed Turn On D’Light up in a Rating 75 1600-metre race at last Saturday’s Marton meeting but the horse only managed sixth out of seven runners.


Top field for Windsor Park Plate

   Xanadu and Mufhasa, two of the first three home in the Group 1 Makfi Challenge Stakes at Hastings on September 1, are expected to head another star-studded line up in this Saturday’s second Group 1 of the Rush Munro Hawke’s Bay spring carnival, the $200,000 Windsor Park Plate.

   The 1600-metre event is the feature race on the middle day and Ocean Park, the winner of the Makfi Challenge Stakes (1400m), is the only notable omission. He is expected to line up in the $A400,000 Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield this Saturday instead.

   Other entries for the Windsor Park Plate include Shez Sinsational Guiseppina, Fleur de Lune, Green Supreme, Dolmabache, He’s Remarkable, Postmans Daughter and Carrick.

Trackwork 11 Sep 2012


A strong solo gallop over 1000 metres by Destiny Cove was one of the highlights at this morning’s Hastings track session.

   Fast work was confined to the plough, which provided soft footing.

   Destiny Cove had trainer Katrina Alexander aboard when running 1000 metres in 1:4.6, coming home the last 600 in an excellent 36.9. The Dubai Destination mare has recorded a win and a second from three starts at 1600 metres since resuming from a spell and will now be stepped up to 2100 metres in a Rating 85 race at this Saturday’s Marton meeting at Awapuni.

   The John Bary-trained pair of Turquoise and Desi Girl looked to be working well at the end of their 1200-metre gallop, the last 1000 metres cut out in 1:4.4 and final 600 in 37.5. Turquoise hasn’t raced since finishing third over 1200 metres at Waverley a month ago while Desi Girl hasn’t raced since May.

   Super Sonic was another who hit out well in training this morning when beating stablemate Irish Beauty over 1000 metres in 1:6.5, the last 600 in 37.3. Super Sonic resumed from a spell with a good third over 1100 metres at Woodville last month and is a likely starter in the three-year-old 1200-metre event at Awapuni on Saturday.

   Karmazyn and a Sunray three-year-old gelding, two others in the John Bary stable, worked together over 1200 metres, the last 1000 in 1:5.6 and final 600 in 37.3 while Firekeeper appeared to stretch out well over a round on the plough, the last 1000 metres taking 1:6.5 and final 600 in 37.6. He will be nominated for the Rating 65 1600 at Saturday’s Marton meeting but may not start if the track is too heavy.

   Jakob Gambino finished ahead of stablemate Sunday’s News at the end of 1200 metres, the last 1000 in 1:5 and final 600 in 38.3 while Sir Keith ran a solo 1200 metres in 1:27.5, the last 600 in 41.2.

   Second Hope, who may start next at the Hawke’s Bay meeting on Saturday week, turned on the speed over 800 metres in 49.9, the last 600 in 37.3 while Whoopi Gee, another who may start at the Hawke’s Bay meeting, ran an easy 1000 metres in 1:11, the last 600 in 40.

   A Savabeel-Longlands four-year-old mare trained by Wayne Chittick worked on her own over 1000 metres and was timed to run the last 800 in 52.4 while Ambitious Prince looked to be working well at the end of an easy 600 metres in 41.5.

   Lavish Prince, a member of the Lowry/Cullen stable, was let off with an easy 800 metres, the last 600 in 42.6 while a Towkay three-year-old gelding in the same stable ran his last 600 metres in 41.1.

   A Savabeel two-year-old gelding and a Towkay three-year-old gelding, two others in the Lowry/Cullen stable, worked over 800 metres at three-quarter pace, the last 600 in 43.6.

Trackwork 6 Sep 2012


   Double O Seven and Starguru, Hastings horses entered for Saturday’s Wanganui meeting, were both let off with easy workouts at this morning’s Hastings track session.

   What little fast work there was took place mainly on the plough, which provided soft footing. There was one gallop timed on the No.1 grass, which was good.

   Double O Seven was schooled over nine hurdle fences in the centre. He underwent similar work in the final few days leading up to his last start win at Te Rapa and must rate a chance again in the Rating 75 2040-metre race at Wanganui. Promising apprentice Miranda Dravitzki has the mount and will claim a 3kg allowance.

   Starguru just underwent a couple of rounds of cantering in the centre of the track. She was not far away when sixth in the Rating 85 1200-metre race at Hastings last Saturday and lines up in the 1200-metre open sprint at Wanganui, with Andrew Calder the rider. Any rain will enhance her chances.

   Just As Well was the only horses timed on the No.1 grass and he ran 1000 metres in 1:9.6, the last 600 in 38.7. He may contest a Rating 75 1600-metre race at Woodville next Tuesday, providing the track is reasonably firm.

   Super Sonic was sent twice over 600 metres on the plough, the first in an easy 41.6 and the second slightly faster in 38.6.

   Gold worked in from about the 900-metre peg on the plough and was timed to run home the last 600 metres in 38.6. She ran a good race for third over 1200 metres at Taupo last month.

  A Danroad-Visionary three-year-old gelding trained by David Goldsbury clocked 53.1 for 800 metres, the last 600 in 39.3.

Trackwork 4 Sep 2012


Disdain, who could start at either Otaki on Thursday or Ellerslie on Saturday, recorded a very quick 800-metre gallop at this morning’s Hastings track session.

   Fast work was confined to the plough, which provided good footing.

   Disdain started a couple of lengths clear of Hand Of God when they left the 800-metre peg and was still in front at the finish when clocking 48.7, the last 600 in 36.7.   

   Disdain finished fourth over 1600 metres at Woodville last start while Hand Of God is a My Halo three-year-old gelding who was placed at the recent Foxton trials and could make his race debut at Woodville next Tuesday.

   Last start winner Double O Seven worked on his own over 1000 metres in 1:9.2, the last 600 in 40.3. He is likely to start in the Rating 75 2040-metre race at Wanganui on Saturday. 

   Gifted Sand sprinted 1000 metres in 1:2.3. He ran the first 400 in a quick 400 in 24.7 and the last 600 in 37.6. He finished fifth over 1000 metres at Taupo last start and is likely to start there again next Monday.

   Gangster Guru, a likely runner at Otaki on Thursday, sprinted a sharp 600 metres on his own in 36.6. He is a full-brother to the speedy mare Starguru and trained at Waipukurau by Kirsty Lawrence.

   Turquoise worked well on her own over 1200 metres in 1:19.9, the last 600 in 38.4. She looks to have improved since finishing third over 1200 metres at Waverley at the beginning of last month.

   A Savabeel-Longlands four-year-old mare trained by Wayne Chittick ran a solo 1000 metres in 1:5.6, the last 600 in 38.2 while Zip and a China Cat four-year-old mare clocked 1:6.3 for 1000 metres, the last 600 in 37.1.

   Firekeeper worked on his own over a round, coming home the last 1200 metres in 1:18.2 and final 600 in 37.9 while a Spartacus three-year-old filly was not hurried when running 800 metres in 55.2, the last 600 in 39.6.

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