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HB Racing Column 30 Sep 2017

HB-bred Disruption looks headed for bigger things

(By John Jenkins)


Disruption, a horse that was co-bred by Hawke’s Bay couple Graham and Isabell Roddick, impressed when breaking through for a maiden win at Riccarton last Saturday and looks headed for bigger things in the future.

The Showcasing colt was following up a fast finishing fourth over 1000m at Riccarton earlier this month and obviously appreciated the step up to 1200m. He looked likely to only run third half-way down the home straight but then charged between the front running pair of Sensibility and Saronic Miss to score by half a neck, in the hands of apprentice jockey Kate Cowan.

“That was a good win,” a happy co-trainer and part-owner Shane Kennedy said after the win.

 "He finished it off very strongly the last bit and he’s a nice wee horse.”

   Kennedy trains Disruption with his partner Anna Furlong and the colt showed a glimpse of his ability when finishing second behind the flying filly Prom Queen in a 1000m two-year-old race last season. He is not among the nominations for the Group 1 $500,000 New Zealand 2000 Guineas (1600m) at Riccarton in November but his connections could make a late payment if he continues to progress.Kennedy said plans are for the horse to run again at Riccarton tomorrow week, in a Rating 65 grade event, and another good performance there could see him contest the Listed $50,000 John Grigg Stakes at Ashburton on October 21.

The Roddicks bred Disruption in partnership with Graham’s Auckland-based sister and brother-in-law, Colin and Anne Scott.

The Roddicks bought Disruption’s dam Busted Love for $5500 from a 2013 Mixed Bloodstock sale. She was in foal to Showcasing at the time but unfortunately that foal died. Disruption is the mare’s second foal and was sold privately to a syndicate, with Kennedy also taking up a share.

Busted Love is an Australian-bred mare, by Flying Spur out of My Other Woman, and was the winner of one race from 11 starts. She is a half-sister the stakes-winning Singapore galloper Be Bee, who is also by Showcasing and has had five starts for three wins and two fourths.

My Other Woman, the dam of Busted Love, is out of the Marauding mare Burst who won Sydney’s Group 1 two-year-old triple crown in her year, the Golden Slipper, AJC Sires’ Produce Stakes and Champagne Stakes.

The Roddicks are still breeding from Busted Love, who produced a filly foal by Echoes To Heaven last week and is to be served by Showcasing again this year.


Gingernuts is red hot  

Gingernuts has been installed a hot favourite at $2.00 for the Group 1 Livamol Classic on the final day of the Bostock New Zealand Hawke’s Bay spring carnival at Hastings tomorrow week after his outstanding win in last Saturday’s Windsor Park Plate on the same track.

The four-year-old’s connections confirmed he will be returning to Hastings for the 2040m feature before heading across the Tasman for the $A3.1million Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 21.

Gingernuts is reported to have come through his short neck win over Close Up in last Saturday’s 1600m event in great order and, based on the scenes at the victory ceremony following that success, there will be a sea of orange caps among the on-course crowd at Hastings tomorrow week.

“There were about twenty five of us on course last Saturday but I expect that number to swell next time as there were quite a few missing for this one,” explained syndicate member Blair Alexander.

Alexander was one of the prime forces in getting the group together to race Gingernuts after Te Akau principal David Ellis bought the horse for $42,500 at a Ready To Run two-year-old sale and admits it has been the ride of a lifetime to date for the 42 strong group.

“It’s been an amazing journey so far and now we are so close to achieving one of the dreams we have had for the horse,” he said.

“We turned down some very large offers for him with one of the main reasons being the desire to try and win a race like the Caulfield or Melbourne Cup which is what just about everyone who has ever owned a horse has dreamed of.

Alexander has also been overwhelmed by the support for Gingernuts from racing fans on both sides of the Tasman.

“The number of Facebook postings and requests for information about the horse is unreal,” he said.

“The requests for our special orange caps is also growing so when he hits Hastings and then Caulfield you will definitely know the Gingernuts army is in town.”

Opie Bosson has been the regular rider of Gingernuts and will again be aboard the Stephen Autridge and Jamie Richards trained runner at Hastings next week.

Volkstok’n’barrell and Chance To Dance are joint second favourites at $7.00 for the Livamol Classic with Mime ($9.00) the only other horse at a single figure quote. Sofia Rosa is on the next line of betting at $10.00 ahead of last Saturday’s impressive Hastings winner Nymph Monte ($12.00).

Chance To Dance rocketed into calculations for the Livamol when he resumed from a spell with a strong win in a Listed 1600m race at Pukekohe last Sunday and will give the Autridge/Richards stable a strong second string in the Livamol. It was the horse’s first start since he finished fifth in the Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) in April and he came from well off the pace on the home turn to win by a long head.

Opie Bosson rode the horse that day but Leith Innes will take the mount in the Livamol.


Hoping for a good track

Ruakaka trainers Donna Logan and Chris Gibbs are hoping for a reasonably firm track at Hastings tomorrow week so their top galloper Volkstok’n’barrell can produce his best in the Group 1 Livamol Classic.

They were bullish about the chances of Tavistock six-year-old in last Saturday’s  Windsor Park Plate (1600m) at Hastings before the rain came, but the multiple Group 1 winner still did them proud in finishing fifth.

“He was fabulous. He was near last turning for home and he couldn’t get out wide enough so it was a really, really good effort,” Logan said.

“We were pretty confident and if the track had been a bit firmer it could well have been a different outcome.”

“He’s improved and the extra distance on a decent track will really suit him.”


On target this time

Nymph Monte missed a start by one in last year’s Group 1 Livamol Classic at Hastings due to him being the second emergency for the 2040m event but he showed he is right on target for next week’s race after a dashing win on the Hastings track last Saturday.

Having just the third run in his current campaign, Nymph Monte showed an amazing burst of speed in the final stages of the Open 2000 to race away for a 3 length victory under jockey Rosie Myers.

It was just the performance trainer Grant Nicholson was looking for as he prepares the horse for his biggest test to date in next week’s weight-for-age feature.

 “He was impressive in that last bit with some improvement still in him,” was his summing up of what his charge had just achieved.

“The track was a concern but Rosie got him out to the right part and he let down really nicely.

“He’s strengthened again for this prep and that little bit of age on him has really helped.”
Nicholson believes Nymph Monte is ready to tackle the elite level under weight-for- age conditions and is looking forward to the challenge.


HB Guineas hopes

The Lisa Latta stable is likely to have two runners in the Group 2 $100,000 Sacred Falls Hawke’s Bay Guineas (1400m) at Hastings tomorrow week.

The Lincoln Farms-raced pair of Jimmy Lincoln, who finished runner-up when resuming at Hastings last Saturday, and Lincoln Hills, who ran sixth, are on target for the three-year-old feature.

“They both went well and Jimmy Lincoln will definitely run in the Guineas and the other horse, who doesn’t like wet tracks, will probably be there as well,” Latta said.

Jimmy Lincoln was successful in his only two-year-old appearance last season while Lincoln Hills also won on debut and was put aside after finishing fourth at Hastings behind the unbeaten Bostonian.

Bostonian is likely to be one of four horses Cambridge trainer Tony Pike will have in the Hawke’s Bay Guineas, the others being Felton Road, Aim Smart and Haussmann.

The latter was hugely impressive when resuming from a spell with a dominant 2-3/4 length win in the 1100m three-year-old race at Hastings last Saturday.

The Pour Moi gelding settled toward the back of the field before rider Leith Innes angled him into the clear near the home turn and he bounded to the front inside the last 300 metres before being eased down towards the finish.

Haussmann was having his first start since winning the Listed Great Northern Foal Stakes (1400m) at Ellerslie on May 27.

Disruption (number 8) responds to the urgings of apprentice jockey Kate Cowan to surge between Sensibility (three) and Saronic Miss to win the 1200-metre maiden at Riccarton last Saturday.

Gingernuts gets up in the last few strides to head off Close Up and win last Saturday’s Group 1 Windsor Park Plate at Hastings. He will be back here for the Livamol Classic tomorrow week.


Hastings Trackwork 26 Sep 2017

(By John Jenkins)

Hunta Pence, preparing for Thursday’s Waipukurau meeting, turned in the quickest time at this morning’s Hastings track session.

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

Hunta Pence ended his work with a 600-metre sprint in 38s. He won a 1000-metre heat at last week’s Waipukurau jumpouts and resumes racing in the Rating 75 race over 1600 metres there on Thursday. Chris Johnson has been booked to ride him.

My Tommy, who is likely to be entered for the Rating 65 race over 1600 metres on the last day of the Hawke’s bay spring carnival, worked late in the session and was not pressured when running 1000 metres in 1:13.9, the last 600 in 43.1. He suffered a minor leg injury after his last start but appears to be back to 100 per cent fitness again now.

 Who Would Know had trainer Kate Hercock aboard when working in from the 1000-metre peg at three-quarter pace. He was timed to run the last 800 in 55.1, the final 600 in 40.7. He was another who won at last week’s Waipukurau jumpouts.

A Per Incanto-Mal three-year-old gelding and a Postponed-Mariandaz three-year-old gelding, both in the Lowry/Cullen stable, were both travelling keenly at the end of 800 metres in 57.3, the last 600 in 41.1.

Bella Margarita was a good distance behind Cowboys Don’t Cry in the early stages when working over a round but finished clearly in front. They were timed to run the last 1200 metres in 1:24.1 and final 600 in 40.9.

Vino Blanco was let off with an easy 600 metres in 45.1 while an O’Reilly-Music three-year-old filly and a Niagara-Bay Point three-year-old filly worked in at three-quarter pace from the 800 and were timed to run the last 600 in 44.5.

A Fastnet Rock two-year-old colt and a Per Incanto two-year-old colt were sprinted up the home straight and took 28.5 for the last 400 metres. The Fastnet Rock colt is being prepared for the Karaka Ready To Run sale in November.

A Nom de Jeu-Lightning Lass four-year-old gelding and a Nom de Jeu-Lightning Lass three-year-old gelding worked together at three-quarter pace, the last 600 taking 45.9. They are both in the Thomson/Brown stable.

HB Racing Column

HB Racing Column 22 Sep 2017

HB-bred Chopin’s Fantaisie leaving his mark in Singapore

(By John Jenkins)

Hawke’s Bay-bred Chopin’s Fantaisie brought up his fifth win from six starts with another game performance at the Kranji racetrack in Singapore last Sunday.

The Pins four-year-old contested a $S100,000 Rating 83 race over 1600m, where he drew one from the outside in an 11 horse field.

Experienced Australian-born jockey Vlad Duric earned high praise for the way he bounced the horse out quickly from the barrier and got him across into a trailing position behind the leaders.

Coming to the home Duric clearly had a handful of horse underneath him but when he angled Chopin’s Fantaisie out around the leaders’ heels the big-striding gelding got off-stride and it took him a while to get properly balanced up again.

Chopin’s Fantaisie had a clear lead half-up up the home straight but Duric then had to keep his mind on the job over the final stages to hold out the fast finishing Chairman, ridden by Englishman Alan Munro, and score by a head.

Duric has no doubt the energy-sapping run will take nothing out of Chopin’s Fantaisie, but did admit that greenness was still the horse’s Achilles’ heel.

“He’s still very green, but he’s an absolute racehorse. There is still a lot more to come from what he’s shown us so far,” he said.

“He was very dour today, though. From the start, he got across quite easily and at the 800m I started to get a feel for him.

“I just wanted to stay behind the horse in front and then peel him out for his run. Once he got in front, he loafed and it felt like he was just waiting for a horse to challenge him, and then he kicked again.

“He is a real stayer. He’s got toughness too and he can really dig deep.”

   Chopin’s Fantaisie will bypass the first Leg of the Singapore Triple Crown series, the Group 1 Panasonic Kranji Mile (1600m) on October 1 and head straight to the second Leg, the Group 1 Raffles Cup (1800m) on October 22. The last Leg, the Group 1 Dester Singapore Gold Cup (2200m) will be run on November 12.

Chopin’s Fantaisie was bred by Taupo-based Pat Lowry and was purchased by his now Singapore trainer, Michael Clements, for $150,000 at the premier session of the 2015 Karaka yearling sales. He has a record of five wins and a second from six starts in Singapore and has earned more than $S200,000 in stake earnings for his Singapore owner, Mr Joshua Tan of Jubilant Racing No 4 Stable.

Chopin’s Fantaisie is out of the Oregon mare Golden Gamble and the fifth individual winner produced by the mare. Her first foal, by No Excuse Needed, was Addicted who won one race from only seven starts for Hastings trainers Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen before she unfortunately died.

 The second foal was Ambitious Dragon, by Pins, who went on to become Hong Kong Horse of the Year. He won 13 races, seven at Group 1 level, and more than $HK58million in stakemoney.

Golden Gamble has since produced three more well performed horses in Hong Kong. The first was Triumphant Dragon (by Fast ‘N’ Famous) who won five races and was followed a year later by Ocean Power (by High Chaparral) who recorded two wins.

The mare’s latest star in that continent is Packing Dragon, a six-year-old gelding by Mastercraftsman who is one of the most consistent gallopers in Hong Kong at the moment. The six-year-old has recorded six wins, three seconds and five thirds from only 24 starts.

Chopin’s Fantaisie is the last foal to race out of Golden Gamble but Pat Lowry now has a three-year-old full-sister to Chopin’s Fantaisie who was in work with the Hastings training partnership of Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen last season and is due to return to that stable at the end of this year.

Golden Gamble, who is 18 years old, is now due to foal to Rock ‘n’ Pop.


Diehard’s breeding showing through

Hawke’s Bay-bred Diehard, a half-brother to the outstanding performer Dundeel,  will be out to add to his good record when he lines up at this Sunday’s Counties meeting at Pukekohe.

The Pour Moi four-year-old is entered for the $22,500 Rating 65 race over 2200m, where he has drawn 11 and will be ridden by Matthew Cameron.

Diehard, who is trained at Cambridge by Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, has had four starts for a win and two seconds. He was bred by Havelock North’s Murray Andersen and the syndicate he set up, Waimarama Partnership, still retains a racing share in the horse.

Diehard is out of the unraced Zabeel mare Stareel, who is a daughter of the 1991-92 New Zealand Three-year-old Filly of the Year Staring.

Dundeel, who is by High Chaparral out of Stareel, was the winner of 10 races from only 19 starts. Six of his victories were at Group 1 level and his stake earnings totalled more than $6.3million. He is now standing at Arrowfield Stud in Australia for a fee of $A27,500.


Another with winning habit

HB-bred Impulsive Habit brought up his second win with an impressive performance in a Rating 65 race over 1200 metres at last Sunday’s Rotorua meeting.

The Echoes Of Heaven four-year-old made light work of his 59kg topweight, powering clear of his rivals over the final stages to score by 1-1/2 lengths and now has a record of two wins, three seconds and a third from only 13 starts.

Impulsive Habit was bred by Hawke’s Bay couple Isabell and Graham Roddick and traces back to the champion galloper Rough Habit. He is out of the Mellifont mare Special Habit, who won three races when trained by the then Woodville-based Bruce Marsh.

Cambridge trainer Lee Somervell picked Special Habit out at the festival session of the 2015 Karaka yearling sales and bought him for $14,000. He then set up a syndicate to race the horse and has retained a share himself.

The Roddicks are still breeding from Special Habit and have an unraced two-year-old by Colombia out of the mare that they intend racing and the mare is now due to foal again to Echoes Of Heaven.

Impulsive Habit’s latest win made up for some bad news the Roddick’s received at the end of last month. The Group 1 winner Addictive Habit, who they bred and shared in the ownership of, had to be euthanized after suffering a colic attack.

The horse had not long been retired from the racetrack after a career that saw him win 11 races and more than $770,000 in stakemoney. His biggest success was in the 2015 Group 1 Livamol Classic at Hastings while he also scored back-to-back victories in the Group 2 Couplands Mile at Riccarton.


Two winners by Niagara

Niagara has been represented by his first two winners in the past week and it was fitting that the sire’s first winner was born and reared in Hawke’s Bay.

Lord Of Cloud, who was Niagara’s first foal and first trial winner, won on debut in a 1400m maiden race at Singapore’s Kranji racecourse last Friday night.

The three-year-old colt, trained by Leticia Dragon for the Billion Dollars Stable, made the perfect start to his career.  

Lord Of Cloud is out of the Masterclass mare Miss Jean Brodie and was bred by Lime Country Thoroughbreds which started out in Hawke’s Bay and initially stood the stallion Niagara here. Owners Greg and Jo Griffin have now moved to Australia.

Lord Of Cloud began his education in New Zealand with Hastings trainers Guy Lowry & Grant Cullen and won his first trial impressively at Waverley when beating Dijon Bleu, who has since won the Listed O’Leary’s Fillies Stakes at Wanganui. The horse was then sold to Singapore.

Niagara was then represented by his second winner when Xbox scored a runaway 3-1/4 length victory in a three-year-old maiden race over 1100m at Te Rapa on Wednesday. The gelding was bred by Auckland racing photographer Trish Dunell, who races him in partnership with a several others from the Matamata stable of Graham Richardson and Gavin Parker.

Niagara now stands at The Oaks Stud in Cambridge for a fee of $5000 + GST.

Waipukurau race day

Hawke’s Bay racegoers will be in for an extra race day next week with Thursday’s Otaki-Maori Racing Club’s meeting now transferred to Waipukurau.

Continuing wet weather on the Kapiti Coast has left the Otaki track extremely heavy and unsuitable for racing.

The change of venue has necessitated the two-year-old race, that would have been run at Otaki, being transferred to the Taranaki meeting on Saturday, September 30 and will be run as a $10,000 maiden two-year-old 990m. A Maiden 1400m and Maiden three-year-old 1200m have been added to the Waipukurau programme. Both these races will carry a stake of $10,000.

HB Guineas contenders

Two of the first three horses home in the Listed El Roca-Sir Colin Meads Trophy on the first day of the Bostock New Zealand Hawke’s Bay spring carnival on September 2 have been confirmed as starters in the Group 2 $100,000 Sacred Falls Hawke’s Bay Guineas on October 7.

Unbeaten Bostonian has come through that race well according to trainer Tony Pike while John Wheeler is also pleased with the progress made by third placed Irish Flame.

“He’s not very big, he’s plain but he is genuine,” Pike said of Bostonian. “He’s a professional who’s done nothing wrong.”

“He will go back to Hastings for the Guineas without another run,” Wheeler said of Irish Flame.

“He definitely looks like he can compete with them. That augurs well for his future as he is still quite immature, both mentally and physically, and I don’t think we will see the very best of him for another eighteen months.

“His longer-term aim for this campaign is the 2000 Guineas at Riccarton so that is where we will be heading once we get through the Hastings run.”


Jockey Vlad Duric was at his vigorous best when getting Chopin’s Fantaisie (inside) home a narrow winner in a 1600-metre race at Singapore last Sunday. It was the horse’s fifth win from only six starts.

Hastings Trackwork 20 Sep 2017

(By John Jenkins)

Talented mare Goodsav indicated she is ready for a bold fresh up performance at this Saturday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting when she recorded a quick solo gallop at this morning’s Hastings track session.

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

Another 14 millimetres of irrigation was put on the course proper yesterday afternoon and a penetrometer reading of the racing surface today came up as a dead-4.

Goodsav worked in from the 1000-metre peg on the plough and was timed to sprint home the last 800 in 49.5 and final 600 in 36.1. The Savabeel mare hasn’t raced since finishing fifth over 1600 metres at Hastings in April and will resume in the Rating 85 race over 1200 metres at Hastings on Saturday. Lisa Allpress has been booked to ride her.

Londaro was another horse who worked well this morning, although he wasn’t asked to do too much in his solo gallop. The big chestnut clocked 1:9.2 for 1000 metres, running the first 400 metres in 29 and then coming home the last 600 in 40.2. He recorded a good third on debut over 1300 metres at Taupo last month and will contest the Special Conditions 1300 at Hastings this Saturday. Troy Harris has been engaged to ride him.

Scandalo worked in from the 600-metre peg at three-quarter pace and was only let stride out over the final 200 metres. He was full of running at the finish and was timed to run the last 400 metres in 24.9. His stablemate Lady Guinness was kept to just three-quarter pace when also running 600 metres on her 

Waipukurau Jumpouts 19 Sep 2017

(By John Jenkins)

Impressive wins by the proven performers Hunta Pence and Xcuses Xcuses and an eye-catching performance by an unraced Per Incanto-Magic Babe three-year-old filly were the highlights at today’s Waipukurau jumpouts.

There were 13 heats run against the running rail, where the ground was rated a dead-4.

Hunta Pence contested the only heat at 1200 metres and, after settling back off the pace, he finished strongly to get up snatch a last stride win in a time of 1:17.07s.

The No Excuse Needed gelding is the winner of three races from only 16 starts and was successful over 2100 metres in his last appearance, at Hastings in May. Trainer Patrick Campbell said Hunta Pence could resume for the new season on the third day of the Hawke’s Bay spring carnival, on October 7.

Xcuses Xcuses is also likely to make a return to racing at the Hawke’s Bay meeting on October 7, according to her trainer John Bary. The six-year-old mare scored a decisive length win in one of the 1000-metre jumpouts and clocked 1:1.08s.

Xcuses Xcuses has recorded four wins and seven minor placings from 24 starts and hasn’t started since finishing eighth in a Listed 1200-metre sprint at Hastings in April.

The Otaki training partnership of Johno Benner and Hollie Wynyard brought a team of horses up for the jumpouts and produced a nice looking three-year-old filly by Per Incanto out of Magic Babe. The big striding chestnut only won by half a length in her 850-metre heat but wasn’t ask to extend by rider Lisa Allpress and clocked 53.6s.

Benner revealed that it was the Per Incanto filly’s first serious jumpout and said she shows plenty of promise. Her grandam is Larrikin Lady, who recorded three wins and several minor placings.

The Benner/Hayward stable also had two well bred three-year-old fillies that underwent a 1000-metre gallop at the completion of the jumpouts. They were Lodi and Lakshmi and were timed to run the distance in 1:2.9, steadily increasing the speed to come home the last 800 in 49.9 and final 400 in 23.9.

Lodi is a filly by More Than Ready out of the Group 1 winning mare Emerald Dream and a half-sister to the successful sire Zed while Lakshmi is by Pins and is the last foal produced by the Kreisler mare Vedodara, whose wins included the 1994 Hawke’s Bay Guineas.

Hastings trainer Paul Nelson also galloped two of his horses at the completion of the jumpouts. They were No Change and Ooee and worked together from the 1200-metre peg in 1:14.8, running home the last 600 in 35.8s. Both horses were striding out well at the finish.

They both line up at this Saturday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting, where No Change contests the Rating 75 race over 2100 metres and Ooee is in the Rating 65 event over 2200 metres.

HB Racing Column 15 Sep 2017

HB-owned jumper Mr Mor retired after 102 race starts

(By John Jenkins)

Top Hawke’s Bay owned jumper Mr Mor ran his last race when finishing fifth in last Saturday’s $125,000 Irvines Great Northern Steeplechase at Ellerslie.

The horse’s Wanganui trainers Evan and JJ Rayner had indicated in the days leading up to the prestigious 6400m event that retirement was imminent and, although there is another open steeplechase race at Te Aroha on October 1 that he could contest, the decision to finally call it quits has been made.

   Last Saturday’s Great Northern was Mr Mor’s 102th race start. He retires with a record of 10 wins, eight seconds and seven thirds and stake earnings of more than $247,000. He won five of his 31 steeplechase starts, banking $200,000 in that role.

The Corrupt gelding won the 2015 Wellington Steeplechase and recorded back-to-back victories in the Hawke’s Bay Steeplechase in 2015 and 2016, the second one when he was 11 years old. He was also runner up in the Grand National Steeplechase at Riccarton in both 2015 and 2016.

“He's been a great horse for us,” Evan Rayner recalled.

“He's owned in Hawke's Bay and winning the Hawke's Bay Steeples twice was as good as anything, though the Wellington Steeples win was a bit special.”

"He was bred and owned by a good mate of mine from our rodeo days, Brian Denton. He died and that's when the syndicate was set up to continue racing him. It's called the Bogga Syndicate because that was what Brian was known as."

By Corrupt out of the Red Tempo mare Redmor, Mr Mor was bred by Waipukurau-based Brian Denton in partnership with his wife Dianne and their Blenheim-based daughter Symone Stevens.

Redmor was the winner of two races for them and she was mated with Corrupt after Hastings-based Tony Lyndon gifted the Dentons a service to that stallion.

After Brian Denton died his wife and daughter asked Lyndon if he could arrange a group of people to assist them in racing Mr Mor and so the Bogga Syndicate was formed.

Lyndon managed the syndicate with the other Hastings members being Lindsay McIntosh, Greg Horton, Peter Johnstone, Peter Unverricht and Pat and Sheryl Watson. Another member was Paul Kavanagh, who formerly resided in Hastings but now lives in Christchurch.

 Mr Mor became only the fourth horse to record consecutive wins in the Hawke’s Bay Steeplechase since the distance became the equivalent of 4800 metres more than 70 years ago. Master Meruit, rated by many as one of the greatest jumpers ever produced in New Zealand, won the race three times, in 1946, 1948 and 1949.

There were only two horses to precede Mr Mor in recording back-to-back wins in the Hawke’s Bay Steeples since 1946 and they were Yeti in 1964 and1965 and Robert Earl in 1970 and 1971.

Mr Mor also became the equal second oldest winner of the race in the past 70 years, with Count Lin (1966), Robert Earl (1971) and Sir Stanley (1976) also being aged 11 when they were successful. The oldest modern day winner of the feature is Teak, who took out the 1974 running at the age of 15.

Bonneval’s connections reap rewards

Class mare Bonneval and her connections dominated the 2017 New Zealand Thoroughbred Horse of the Year Awards held in Auckland last Sunday.

The dual Oaks winner was voted Horse of the Year, Three-Year-Old of the Year and Stayer of the Year. Her owners were also presented with the New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year trophy while her trainers, Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, gained all bar one of the 57 votes cast for Trainer of the Year and Bonneval’s dam, Imposingly, was named Broodmare of the Year.

The prestigious NZTR Contribution to Racing Award went to syndicator and Te Akau Racing principal David Ellis.

   The accolades for Bonneval came the day after she began her four-year-old career with a decisive Group 2 win over 1600m at Moonee Valley. She is now second favourite for the Caulfield Cup and third favourite for the Melbourne Cup.

She is the first three-year-old filly to be named Horse of the Year since Sunline, in 1999 and the fourth successive Horse of the Year winner to be trained by Baker and Forsman, following Dundeel (2014) and Mongolian Khan (2015 & 2016).

The award winners with votes counted.-

2017 Horse of the Year: Bonneval (27 votes). Also: Gingernuts (15), Kawi (10), Jon Snow (3).

NZTR Award for Outstanding Contribution to NZ Racing:  David Ellis.

Champion Two-Year-Old: Melody Belle (46). Other finalists: Summer Passage (11), Gold Fever.

Champion Three-Year-Old: Bonneval (30). Other finalists: Gingernuts (24), Jon Snow (3), La Diosa, Ugo Foscolo.

Champion Sprinter: Start Wondering (50). Other finalists: Kawi (3), Saracino (3), Signify.

Champion Middle Distance Horse: Kawi (55). Other finalists: Volkstok’n’barrell (1), Thee Auld Floozie, Willie Cazals.

Champion Stayer: Bonneval (37). Other finalists: Chenille (8), Gingernuts (6), Jon Snow (3), Chocante (1), Jacksstar, Lizzie L’Amour.

Champion Jumper: Kick Back (36). Other finalists: Sea King (14), Amanood Lad (4), Ngario (2), Upper Cut (1), D’Llaro, Raisafuasho.

Dunstan Trainer of the Year: Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman (56). Other finalist: Stephen Autridge & Jamie Richards (1).

Jockey of the Year: Chris Johnson (31). Other finalists: Opie Bosson (23), Matt Cameron (1), Alysha Collett, Danielle Johnson.

Jumps Jockey of the Year: Aaron Kuru (31). Other finalists: Shaun Fannin (26), Will Gordon.

Owner of the Year: JML Bloodstock (45). Other finalists: Hermitage Thoroughbreds (6), Lincoln Farms Bloodstock (1), China Horse Club, Kevin Hickman, NZ Thoroughbred Holdings, Sir Peter Vela, Raffles Dancers (NZ).

Media Award: Trish Dunell, Trish Dunell Photography (32). Other finalists: Paul Vettise (12), Mat Kermeen (6).

Breeder of the Year: Goodwood Stud (Breeder of Gingernuts, Nicoletta & Order Again). Other finalists: City Bloodstock, John & Christine Goodin, Richard Moore.

Broodmare of the Year: Imposingly (dam of Bonneval & Imposing Lass). Other finalists: Double Elle, Star Band.

Strapper of the Year - sponsored by Chris Waller: Joanne Roylands. Other finalists: Anthony Burton, Masaji Haruki.

Trainers’ Premiership:  Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman.

Jockeys’ Premiership: Chris Johnson.

Apprentices’ Premiership: Sam Weatherley.

Owners’ Premiership:  JML Bloodstock.

Grosvenor Award: (stallion earnings in NZ): Savabeel.

Dewar Trophy: (stallion earnings in New Zealand and Australia): Savabeel.

Centaine Award: (Stallion earnings worldwide): Savabeel.

NZ Bloodstock Filly of the Year: Bonneval.


Three-pronged attack

The top training partnership of Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman plans to have three runners in the second leg of the Triple Crown series at the Bostock New Zealand Hawke’s Bay spring carnival.

 The stable will be represented by fresh runners Mime and Stolen Dance in the Group 1 $200,000 Windsor Park Plate tomorrow week with Coldplay to complete their Hastings-bound trio.

 Stolen Dance was to have debuted for the Cambridge trainers in the Group1 Tarzino Trophy, but plans were scrapped due to the slow underfoot conditions.

 “It would have been too tough first-up on her,” Forsman said. “We left it until late, but the forecast was for more rain on the day and she’s hopeless on wet tracks.”

 All three of the stable’s candidates are Group 2 winners chasing a breakthrough success at the elite level.

   “We’re happy with Mime and we’re intentionally keeping her on the fresh side,” Forsman said. “By the time she got to the third leg last year it was all a bit too much.”

 Twelve months ago, Mime was an unlucky eighth in the Makfi Challenge Stakes (now the Tarzino Trophy) before she ran second in the Windsor Park Plate and again eighth in the Livamol Classic.

Coldplay will have race fitness on her side after she was blocked for room when unplaced in the Group 2 Foxbridge Plate and she was foiled by the Slow 9 going at Hastings when out of the money in the Tarzino Trophy.

“She went to let down, but she couldn’t handle the track,” Forsman said. “She’s come through the race fine though.”

Goldsbury enjoying Queensland

Former Hawke’s Bay apprentice jockey Rebecca Goldsbury is making the most of her stint with leading Queensland provincial trainer Ben Currie and may look to extend her stay once her three-month loan period expires.

Goldsbury took the opportunity to broaden her riding experience by accepting an offer to ride for Currie from August 1 after successfully completing a three-week trial in late June. In that time, she has ridden 10 provincial winners and by her own admission is having a “complete blast”.

“It’s really good here and I’m thoroughly enjoying myself,” she said.

“I loved the initial three weeks I had and when they asked me to stay on for another three months I jumped at the opportunity.

“I had been thinking about coming over and trying my luck in Australia and when I got the call to see whether I would be interested it seemed like the perfect time to take advantage of the offer.

“I rode for three weeks and then had two back at home before I flew back for the start of the new season.

“I love it here and with plenty of Kiwis riding or involved in stables I haven’t really been homesick just yet.”

Goldsbury is currently licensed to ride at provincial and country meetings where she can claim a 1.5-kilogram allowance. Once she is permitted to ride at the main city meetings, that allowance is raised to 3kg which should see her in demand.

Waipukurau jumpouts

The Waipukurau Jockey Club will stage jumpouts on the Waipukurau track next Tuesday, September 19, with the first heat timed for 9am. Due to a large number of horses competing at the last official Foxton barrier trials, the next Central Districts trials to be held at Foxton have been pushed back a week to September 26 in order to give the Foxton track more time to recover.


Mr Mor clears the last fence on his way to winning the 2016 Hawke’s Bay Steeplechase. It was the gelding’s second successive win in the 4800-metre feature. 

Hastings Trackwork 14 Sep 2017

(By John Jenkins)

In-form mare Worldclass turned in a good solo gallop in a reasonably busy session at the Hastings track this morning.

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

The course proper had 12 millimetres of irrigation put on it on Tuesday and a penetrometer reading this morning came up as a good-3.

Worldclass worked in from the 1000-metre peg in 1:6.3, running the first 400 metres in 28.5 and then quickening over the last 600 in 37.8. The Iffraaj mare won two races in a row before she got bogged down on a very wet track at Woodville last start and could race next at either Wanganui on September 21 or Taupo the following day.

Hunta Pence was another who strode out nicely in a solo workout this morning, running the last 600 metres of his work in 38.8. He may have a run at the Waipukurau jumpouts next Tuesday before he resumes on race day.

Red Tiara turned in one of the quickest times for the morning when she ran 1000 metres in 1:5.4, the last 600 in 36.5. She looks to be coming up well again for trainer Kelly Burne.

Dare To Rock and a Postponed-Mariandaz three-year-old gelding, both in the Lowry/Cullen stable, worked together over 1000 metres in 1:9.2, the last 600 in 38.8 while Pakapunch ran a solo 1000 metres in 1:9.6, the last 600 in 39.3.

Real Beach had trainer Kelly Burne aboard when working in from the 1200-metre peg and was timed to run the last 1000 metres in 1:5.8 and final 600 in 38 while Oscar’s Shadow ran an easy 800 metres on her own in 55.2, the last 600 in 40.1.

An  Uncle Mo three-year-old colt and an O’Reilly-Catalina three-year-old gelding worked in at three-quarter pace from the 1000-metre peg before sprinting home the last 600 metres in a quick 36.8 while two Darci Brahma three-year-old fillies clocked 1:10.2 for an easy 1000 metres, the last 600 in 40.

A Super Easy-Today Not Tomorrow two-year-old gelding and a Niagara three-year-old, two others in the Lowry/Cullen stable, worked in from the 800-metre peg and were timed to run the last 600 in 40.3 while a Rip Van Winkle-Snippins three-year-old filly ran an easy 1000 metres on her own in 1:11.9, the last 600 in 41.

Dances With Wolves was restricted to just three-quarter pace, running his last 600 metres in 44.9.

Hastings Trackwork 12 Sep 2017


(By John Jenkins)

Deb turned in the fastest time at this morning’s Hastings track session when she was allowed to work on the course proper.

It was decided to let one horse gallop about four metres out on the course proper to gauge how firm the track was and Deb worked in from the 1000-metre peg in 1:8.7, the last 600 in 38.1.

A penetrometer reading was taken on the course proper after the gallop and came up as a good-3.

Deb is a member of the Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen stable who finished third on debut last season and was them unplaced in two more starts. She finished fourth in a 1000-metre jumpout at Hastings on September 4.

All other work this morning was carried out on the plough, which also provided reasonably firm footing.

Dances With Wolves wasn’t hurried when running a solo 1000 metres in 1:10.9, the last 600 in 40.3 while Carillion was kept to just three-quarter pace over 600 metres in 46.3.

Who Would Know and a Showcasing three-year-old filly, both trained by Kate Hercock, worked together over 1000 metres in 1:14.7, the last 600 in 42.4 while Red Tiara had trainer Kelly Burne aboard when running 800 metres in 57.3, the last 600 in 42.7.

 Shady Lady was kept under a hold throughout 800 metres in 58.2, the last 600 in 42.7. She has recorded a second, a third and a fourth from three starts and is likely to start next at the Wanganui meeting on September 21.

Vannoss worked in from the 1200-metre peg in 1:29.3, running the first 600 in a leisurely 46.5 and quickening only slightly over the last 600 in 42.8. He recorded a good fourth on debut over 1400 metres at Woodville at the end of last month and looks to have trained on well since.

 Real Beach had trainer Kelly Burne aboard when running an easy 600 metres in 41.4 while a Zed three-year-old gelding trained by Kate Hercock took 1:16.1 for an easy 1000 metres, the last 600 in 44.5.

HB Racing Column 8 Sep 2017

Hastings-trained galloper was waiting for no one

(By John Jenkins)

 Variety is proving to be the spice of life for Hastings-trained Wait A Sec.

The seven-year-old made it four wins in a row when he produced a scintillating finish, under the urgings of top woman jockey Lisa Allpress, to snatch a last stride victory in the $40,000 Bostock New Zealand Spring Carnival Open at Hastings last Saturday.

It was the horse’s first start for two months and he was dropping back from 2100m to 1600m. He was also meeting a strong field of open class gallopers.

Yet the Postponed gelding gave his rivals a head start and a beating, coming from at least 5 lengths off the leaders at the 300 to get up and win by a long head over Woodsman, with King Krovanh only half a head back in third. Such was his whirl-wind finish that he clocked the third fastest last 600m of any runner on the nine race programme.

Wait A Sec now has a record of nine wins, five seconds and five thirds from only 38 starts. He is trained by Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen and seems to be thriving since his work has been varied between normal trackwork at Hastings and farm work on the Dannevirke property where Grant Cullen and his partner Nikki Lourie live.

“He is just a very happy horse at the moment,” Guy Lowry said.

“He’s also a horse that has taken a while to mature and has just got better with age.”

Wait A Sec was bred by his Hastings owner Ian Henderson, who races him in partnership with his Perth-based son Paul. He is out of the Grosvenor mare Security, who was bought for $5000 at a 2007 Karaka mixed bloodstock sale.

Security is out of Secrecy, who was the winner of seven races for another Hawke’s Bay owner-breeder, Don Gordon.

The first foal Henderson bred out of Security was a full-brother to Wait A Sec, called Secured. He was sold to Australian-based trainer Brian Jenkins for $25,000 and went on to record a win and six minor placings in that country.

Henderson then bred a colt by Handsome Ransom out of Security but it broke down before getting to the races, with Wait A Sec being the next foal and the only one her has raced out of the mare.

Wait A Sec will now have his next start in the $40,000 Open 2000m race on the second day of the Bostock New Zealand Hawke’s Bay spring carnival on September 23 and also holds a nomination for the Group 1 $250,000 Livamol Classic (2040m) on the third day, on October 7.

The long range mission for the horse is the Group 3 $250,000 New Zealand Cup (3200m) at Riccarton on November 18.


Nelsons take out two major awards

Paul Nelson and his wife Carol have won two of the main trophies in the annual Hawke’s Bay/Poverty Bay racing and breeding awards.

This year’s function, sponsored by Bramwell Bate and Vet Associates, was held at the Hastings racecourse last Friday evening and recognised the achievements of local thoroughbred owners, trainers, breeders and horses during the 2016-17 racing season.

Nelson was crowned leading Hawke’s Bay/Poverty Bay trainer on strike-rate for the season. He produced 16 winners from 83 starters for a strike-rate of 5.19 and his wins included the Wellington Steeplechase with Amanood Lad and Wellington Hurdles with The Shackler.

Nelson and his wife Carol were also awarded the trophy for Hawke’s Bay/Poverty Bay Owner of the Year. This category was worked out on a points basis, with 12 points for a Group 1 win down to 1 point for a non-black type win.

John Bary was the leading trainer on wins with 18, two ahead of Paul Nelson, while Bary also produced the top trained horse in the district in Miss Wilson.

   Miss Wilson is owned by her Havelock North breeders Richard and Liz Wood and won four races in a row during the season, culminating in a victory in the Group 3 Cuddle Stakes at Trentham.

Miss Wilson was also one of five finalists for Hawke’s Bay/Poverty Bay Owned Horse of the Year, with the others being All Roads, Authentic Paddy, Honey Rider, Jon Snow and Pacorus.

The winner was Jon Snow, trained at Cambridge by Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, and owned by several members of the Zame family from Gisborne. He is the first horse the partnership has bought and raced and, during the past season, he won the Group 1 ATC Derby and Group 2 Tulloch Stakes in Sydney and was runner-up in the Group 2 Hawke’s Bay Guineas. He also finished third in the Group 1 New Zealand Derby, Group 1 Levin Classic, Group 2 Great Northern Guineas and the Karaka Three-year-old Mile.

The Hawke’s Bay/Poverty Bay Broodmare of the Year title went to Baltika and her owner Graham de Gruchy also won the Breeder of the Year award.

Baltika is the dam of Sacred Elixir, who won the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude and Group 2 Moonee Valley Vase in Melbourne last spring before finishing second in the Group 1 VRC Derby. He also earned De Gruchy the Jimmy Choux award for the top Hawke’s Bay/ Poverty Bay bred three-year-old for the year.

Taupo-based Pat Lowry won the award for Hawke’s Bay/ Poverty Bay Breeder of the Year on wins. He is the breeder of Packing Tycoon, who won four races in Hong Kong, and also Chopin’s Fantaisie, who won his first four starts in Singapore. Both horses are out of the Oregon mare Golden Gamble.


Revolution prevails

He may have been a seven-year-old winning his first race but Hastings-trained Revolution suggested he could go on to better things in the future when scoring a runaway victory over 2100m at Woodville on Thursday of last week.

The Guillotine gelding, ridden by Lisa Allpress, capped off a third and two fourths from three starts this campaign with an easy 2-1/4 length win.

Revolution is prepared at Hastings by Paul Nelson and is owned by him and his wife Carol. They bred the horse out of the Gold Brose mare Kettle Hill, who was the winner of one race.

Revolution showed ability when fourth on debut over 1200m at Wanganui in May 2014 but a series of injuries and illness has meant that he has only had 10 starts since and he was sidelined for 18 months before he resumed with a third over 1200m at Hastings on July 20.


Four Jimmy Choux winners

Former outstanding Hastings-trained galloper Jimmy Choux had one of his best results as a sire last weekend when he produced four Australasian winners.

Bostonian and Batabullet were both game winners sired by him at last Saturday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting while Parlay Voux was also successful at Hawkesbury on Saturday and Chouxting The Mob won at Geelong on Sunday.

 Jimmy Choux was the winner of 12 races from the Hastings stable of John Bary, five of them at Group 1 level, and was raced by his Havelock North breeders Richard and Liz Wood. He now stands at Matamata’s Rich Hill Stud for a fee of $7000 plus GST.

The four progeny of Jimmy Choux to win last weekend were successful at distances ranging from 1000m to 2433m. Bostonian maintained his unbeaten record from three starts when prevailing over a high class field of three-year-olds in the Listed El Roca-Sir Colin Meads Trophy (1200m) while Batabullet withstood a late challenge from  Almo Street to score his third win from seven starts in a Rating 75 race over 1600m. Parlay Voux won a 1000m Class 2 race at Hawkesbury while Chouxting The Mob was successful in a 2433m maiden at Geelong.

The Woods bred Chouxting The Mob and Richard is part of a large group of people that race the four-year-old from the Ballarat stable of Simon Morrish. The horse was originally offered for sale as a weanling at a Karaka mixed bloodstock sale in 2014 but was passed in for $58,000, with the reserve being $60,000.

Chouxting The Mob was having his fourth start and the win followed a second and a fourth. He is out of the Reset mare Bidthemobgooday, who won two races in Australia and is a daughter of Tully Thunder, whose four wins included the Group 1 Australasian Oaks (2000m).


Local win at Ashburton

Locally Sauced, a horse part-owned by Hastings woman Irene Downey and her son Josh, chalked up his third win when successful in a $10,000 Rating 65 race over 2100m at Ashburton last Friday.

The six-year-old Iffraaj gelding is trained by the Waiuku husband and wife team of Grant and Tana Shaw and has also recorded seven minor placings from his 35 starts.

The horse has been ridden in all three of his wins by top South Island jockey Chris Johnson, who is a close friend of Irene Downey and her husband Graeme and regularly stays with them when he rides at race meetings in the Central Districts. 


Gold Trail start still on

John Morell remains focussed on the Group 3 Hawke’s Bay Breeders’ Gold Trail Stakes at Hastings on September 23 with Florence Jean, despite a hiccup to the filly’s programme.

The Te Rapa owner-trainer was forced to bypass last Saturday’s opening day of the Hastings carnival after the three-year-old was laid low by a virus.

“We’re working her along quietly,” Morell said. “She’s eating again now and feeling livelier so we’ll go down for the Gold Trail, she usually races well fresh.

“I’m hoping she can get up to 1400 metres and a mile later. She relaxes so I think she will run on alright.”

Florence Jean’s only defeat in three starts came in the Group 2 Matamata Breeders’ Stakes when she was checked at the start and made late ground for sixth.

Perfect Fit retired

Group 1 winning mare Perfect Fit has been retired after tailing the field home in last Saturday’s Group 1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m) at Hastings.

The daughter of Elusive City won six of her 18 starts, including the Group 1New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes (1600m), from the Matamata stable of Ken and Bev Kelso. She is to be mated this spring with Australian-based stallion Exceed And Excel.

Hastings-trained Wait A Sec (number 7) gets up on the outside to snatch a last stride win over Woodsman (grey) and King Krovanh in a close finish to the Open 1600-metre race at Hastings last Saturday. It was the seven-year-old’s fourth consecutive win this campaign.

Hastings Trackwork 6 Sep 2017

(By John Jenkins)

Scandalo was the only horse timed in another quiet session at the Hastings track this morning.

With jumpouts held on the Hastings track on Monday and trials at Foxton on Tuesday, there was not much action at the track today.

Scandalo worked in from the 800-metre peg on the plough in 55.8, running the first 200 in 15.5 before quickening slightly over the last 600 in 40.3. The Shocking gelding was supposed to have had a jumpout on Monday but gave one of his legs a slight knock so trainer Patrick Campbell decided to withdraw him.

The five-year-old showed good potential last season when recording two wins and a second in the space of five starts but only has a rating of 67 points and Campbell says it is not going to be easy finding a suitable race to kick him off in a new campaign.

Gilhoolie had trainer James Bridge aboard when undergoing two rounds of pacework on the sand. He was an easy winner of a 750-metre heat at Monday’s Hastings jumpouts but is unlikely to be seen back racing until early next month.

The Guillotine gelding won on debut at Ellerslie in October last year and was then placed a further three times as a two-year-old. He has now furnished into a bigger and stronger horse and is likely to have a trial at Foxton on September 19 before resuming in a $25,000 three-year-old race over 1200 metres at Te Rapa on October 6.

Kipkeino rounded off his preparation for Saturday’s Great Northern Hurdles with a solid workout at the Hastings track on Tuesday. He had trainer Lucy de Lautour aboard when working in from the 1200-metre peg and finished his work off that strongly that it took his rider a good 800 metres to pull him up. He was an impressive last start winner over hurdles at Wanganui and is ready for another big performance on Saturday, especially if track conditions are wet and loose.


Hastings Trackwork 5 Sep 2017

Stakes placed mare Goodsav shows out at Hastings jumpouts

(By John Jenkins)

Impressive wins by the well performed mares Goodsav and Xcuses Xcuses were the highlights at today’s (Monday) Hastings jumpouts.

There were nine heats run wide out on the course proper, which provided slow footing.

Melbourne Cup winning jockey Tony Allan was in attendance at the jumpouts and Goodsav in her jumpout. The Savabeel mare only had two rivals in her 750-metre heat and both paled in comparison to her experience and proven ability. However the way she finished her work off suggests she is coming up very well in another campaign. She strode clear over the final stages to win by 3 lengths, clocking a good time of 47.8s.

Goodsav is the winner of three races and was placed in last year’s Group 3 Cuddle Stakes (1600m) at Trentham. She is expected to resume racing on one of the latter days of the Hawke’s Bay spring carnival.

Xcuses Xcuses also only had two rivals in her 750-metre heat and she won by a length, with her winning time of 47.7s being the fastest time of the seven heats at that distance. The No Excuses Needed mare has recorded four win and seven minor placings and is also expected to resume racing within the next month.



Heat 1, 750m: Roc De Cambes 3yr-old filly (D Turner) 1, Niagara-Asaweb 3yr-old gelding 2, Super Easy-Today Not Tomorrow 3. Four starters. Margins: 1 length, 1 length. Time: 52.5s. Winner trained by John Bary. Hastings.

Heat 2, 750m: Rip Van Winkle-Snippins 3yr-old filly (M Tanaka) 1, Elston 2, Mocca 3. Four starters. Margins: ¾ length, neck. Time: 48.9s. Winner trained by Guy Lowry & Grant Cullen, Hastings.

Heat 3, 750m: Darci Brahma 3yr-old filly (J Bassett) 1, Darci Brahma 3yr-old filly 2, Showcasing 3yr-old filly 3. Four starters. Margins: ½ length, 6 lengths. Time: 48.5s. Winner trained by Richard McKenzie, Hastings.

Heat 4, 750m: Gunna Shockemall (D Turner) 1, Nigella Jazz 2, Dare To Rock 3. Four starters. Margins: Head, ¾ length. Time: 49.2s. Winner trained by Kylie Wakely, Hastings.

Heat 5, 750m: Gilhoolie (J Bassett) 1, Pakapunch 2, Vinnie’s Volly 3. Four starters. Margins: 1 length, long neck. Time: 47.8s. Winner trained by James Bridge, Hastings.

Heat 6, 750m: Xcuses Xcuses (T Morgan) 1, Chouxperb 2, Oscar’s Shadow 3. Three starters. Margins: 1 length, 3 lengths. Time: 47.7s. Winner trained by John Bary, Hastings.

Heat 7, 750m: Goodsav (T Allan) 1, Belle Amore 2, Iffonlyniomi 3. Three starters. Margins: 3 lengths, 2-1/2 lengths. Time: 47.8s. Winner trained by Patrick Campbell, Hastings.

Heat 8, 1000m: Per Incanto-Mal 3yr-old gelding (J Bassett) 1, Uncle Mo 3yr-old colt 2, Bella Margarita 3. Four starters. Margins: ½ length, 2 lengths. Time: 1:6.5. Winner trained by Guy Lowry & Grant Cullen, Hastings.

Heat 9, 1000m: Kaipawe (K Cowan) 1, Hunta Pence 2, Postponed-Mariandaz 3yr-old gelding 3. Five starters. Margins: Long neck, 2 lengths. Time: 1:5.3. Winner trained by Sue Thompson & Mike Brown, Hastings.


Hastings Trackwork 1 Sep 2017

Nelson brings up an Ellerslie first with Amanood Lad

(By John Jenkins)

Hastings trainer Paul Nelson has won most of the major jumping races on the New Zealand racing calendar but he achieved something new when he produced Amanood Lad to win last Saturday’s $50,000 The Tractor Centre Pakuranga Hunt Cup at Ellerslie.

Nelson’s list of feature hurdle wins on the Ellerslie track include three Great Northerns, once with Chibuli and twice with Just Not Cricket, but it was the first time he has taken out a prestige steeplechase over the famous Ellerslie hill.

“”We’ve never been successful in a big steeplechase there before but we haven’t had a lot of runners in the big ones either,” Nelson said this week.

“I don’t think we had a runner in the Great Northern Steeplechase when it used to be run back in June.”

The closest a Paul Nelson-trained runner has come to winning a major steeplechase at Ellerslie in recent years was when Ho Down finished second in the 2012 running of the McGregor Grant Steeples while The Swagger finished fourth in the same race in 2008.

Amanood Lad was the fifth horse Nelson has lined up in the Pakuranga Hunt Cup in the last 10 years. No Yarn finished eighth in 2006, Solid Steal was also eighth in 2012 while No Quota (fifth) and Bally Heights (10th) were his two representatives in 2014.

Amanood Lad might be in the twilight of his racing career but the sprightly 13-year-old showed he is still more than a match for the best jumpers in the country by lumping topweight of 71kg to a strong win last Saturday.

“He’s done it in style and with a lot of weight,” trainer Paul Nelson said. “He loves Ellerslie and he loves jumping, he’s a pleasure to have.”

A fourth start in the Great Northern Steeplechase tomorrow week now beckons for Amanood Lad, who reserves his best for the Auckland course.

He won the Great Northern Steeplechase in 2014  and has twice been placed in the gruelling 6400-metre event. He has also twice won the McGregor Grant Steeplechase at Ellerslie and had recorded two minor placings in the Pakuranga Hunt Cup prior to last Saturday, when trained by Ben Foote.

“I thought he may have been a bit underdone with five weeks between races and he still looked a bit fresh, I wondered if we had done enough work with him,” Nelson said.

However, last month’s Wellington Steeplechase winner revelled in his work and was in or near the lead throughout the 4900 metres. Rider Aaron Kuru saved every inch of ground by hugging the inside line and they took control coming down the hill for the last time.

Amanood Lad was clear in front jumping the last fence and stayed on strongly to score by 1-1/2 lengths from the favourite Wise Men Say, with Tizza Secret a further 1-3/4 lengths back in third.

“He was probably a bit keener than in his previous races and I didn’t know whether that was a good thing or a bad thing,” Kuru said.

“He probably got to the front a bit early really but he’s got a big heart and he tries his hardest every time, that’s all you can ask for.”

The Germano gelding is owned by Te Awamutu couple John and Shirley Blair and won five races for Cambridge trainer Ben Foote before being transferred to Nelson’s stable in April this year.


Amanood Lad and jockey Aaron Kuru fly the water jump on their way to winning last Saturday’s $50,000 Pakuranga Hunt Cup Steeplechase at Ellerslie.

Hastings trainer Paul Nelson (right) joins Amanood Lad’s owners, John and Shirley Blair, along with winning jockey Aaron Kuru for the presentation following last Saturday’s feature jumping race at Ellerslie.

Wearing Cancer Society silks                     

One jockey will be wearing Cancer Society silks in each of the nine races at tomorrow’s 'Daffodil Raceday' at Hastings and that horse wins the TAB will donate $1000 to the Cancer Society.
Kawi is famous for winning the big race on Daffodil Raceday in Hawke's Bay for the past two years and his trainer, Allan Sharrock, considers the Cancer Society colours a good luck charm.
"After Kawi's back-to-back wins, we think these silks are bringing us some decent luck. It's always a thrill to see him pass the winning post first, but it's even more rewarding to see him do it carrying the Cancer Society colours," Sharrock said.



Blinkers on Perfect Fit

The connections of Perfect Fit are hoping a gear addition will bring out the best in the mare when she contests tomorrow’s Group 1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m) at Hastings.

Trainers Ken and Bev Kelso have decided to put the blinkers on the mare in the wake of her unplaced run in the Group 2 Foxbridge Plate (1200m) a fortnight ago.

“It was Bev’s suggestion, the same as it was when Xanadu beat Mufhasa in the Windsor Park Plate, so I’m happy to run with it,” Ken Kelso said.

“We’ve been happy with her all the way through, but we feel that by adding blinkers it will just sharpen her.”

Veteran HB owner-breeder dies

Ted Laxon, a successful owner, breeder and trainer of thoroughbreds in Hawke’s Bay for close on 50 years, died last week aged 86.

Laxon established a successful breed back in the late 1960s, with most of his horses at that time carrying the suffix Spy in their name.

 In more recent years he bred and trained a small team on his own, with Wellshar (4 wins) and Classic Court (2 wins) being two good performers he had in the early 1980s.

 Laxon briefly trained in partnership with former Feilding-based Wayne Davies and the pair were the leading Hawke’s Bay trainers for the 2001-2002 racing season. Horses they prepared that season won 10 races with Justice Court (three), Porter Myth (two), Virtell (two), Starmix (two) and Jetander (one). They took out the winning strike-rate award for Hawke’s Bay for that season while Laxon and his wife Shirley were also the top Hawke’s Bay owners that year.

 Justice Court was one of the best horses Laxon owned, with a record of five wins, five seconds and four thirds from 65 starts. The grey took 25 starts to win his first race but recorded a slick 2:01.20 when leading all the way in his last success, over 2000m on his home track in May 2002.

Justice Court credited the then Hastings apprentice Kursty Moore with her first three wins and Laxon prided himself in giving young apprentices a start, just as he had done with Trevor Whittington more than 30 years before.

“Trevor was doing a fair bit of trackwork riding for me at that time, just like Kursty is now,” Laxon said at the time.

Laxon’s horses were often overlooked in the betting and he rocked the punters when he produced Tridane to win at odds of 164 to one in a $25,000 Rating 80 race at Hastings in October, 2010. He also won three races with Tradtri before selling that horse to Australia, where he is still racing today.


Dream farewell thwarted

 Champion trainer Laurie Laxon didn’t enjoy a fairytale ending to his Singapore career last Sunday, but he went down fighting.

 His final runner Lim’s Shot was beaten into second by another New Zealand-bred son of Showcasing, the Shane Baertschiger-trained Caorunn, who was ridden by John Powell.

 “He’s only a small horse, but he’s coming together now. I think he can take the next step-up,” Baertschiger said. “It’s just a pity we beat Laurie, but that’s the way it is.”

Laxon has trained 1263 winners over 17 stellar years in Singapore and he is now returning to New Zealand to continue his career.


Kiwi hope in Baster’s hands

Jon Snow, one of the finalists for the Hawke’s Bay/Poverty Bay Owned Horse of the Year for the last racing season, will be ridden by Stephen Baster when he kicks off a fresh campaign in tomorrow’s $A1 million Group1 New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield.

Last season’s Group 1 Australian Derby winner will be the first of Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman’s quartet of Melbourne spring carnival contenders to step out.

“Over 1400 metres in that class of field might be a bit sharp for him, but he travelled over well and galloped strongly under Baster this morning,” Forsman said on Thursday.

Jon Snow was accompanied to Australia by fellow Group 1winners Bonneval and Lizzie L’Amour, who will resume in the Group 1 Dato Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley on Saturday week.

The three-year-old Weather With You is likely to run at Sandown next week to open his Australian campaign aimed at the Group 1 VRC Derby.

“At this stage he’ll run in a three-year-old 1400 metre maiden,” Forsman said.


Industry mourns talented rider

The thoroughbred industry is mourning the loss of Grand National Steeplechase-winning jockey Cody Singer, who died on Tuesday.

The talented horseman successfully turned to jumps racing after weight issues and partnered Graeme Rogerson’s Cape Kinaveral to claim top honours in the 2012 Riccarton feature.

Singer rode 36 winners during his career that started with Pukekohe trainer Richard Collett. Other prestige victories included the 2010 Wellington Steeplechase aboard Brushman for Mark Oulaghan, the 2012 Waikato Hurdles on Borrack for Adrian Bull and on the Rudy Liefting-trained Just Got Home in the 2014 Wellington Hurdles.


First Aussie winner for sire

Westbury Stud resident Reliable Man, a Group 1 winner in both hemispheres, has opened his stallion account in Australia.

Expatriate New Zealand trainers Trent Busuttin and Natalie Young produced his promising son Sully to win over 1400m at Wangaratta last Monday.

Nominated for the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas, Sully had placed at his previous two starts including a third behind the boom colt Royal Symphony at Flemington in June.






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