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Eva Godiva starting to live up to her pedigree 30 Dec 2016

(By John Jenkins)


   It was only a lowly rated maiden win but the way Hawke’s Bay-owned Eva Godiva scored over 1600 metres at New Plymouth last Saturday suggests she could be headed for much bigger things in the future.

   The royally-bred filly looked likely to only finish second, when clearly headed inside the last 300 metres, but showed tremendous determination to wrest back the lead in the last few strides and get a half-head decision on the line.

   It was Eva Godiva’s second start and followed a debut sixth over 1300 metres at Hastings on December 8. She was also fourth in a 935-metre Cambridge trial on November 28.

   By champion Australian sire Redoute’s Choice out of the Last Tycoon mare Gussy Godiva, Eva Godiva is trained by the Cambridge partnership of Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman and was bred by Waipukurau’s Mick Ormond.

   Ormond races the three-year-old filly in partnership with his son Ru, another Waipukurau man, Peter Coleman, Andy Davies from Hastings, The Grizzlies Syndicate and The Wild Kiwis Syndicate.

   “The Grizzlies Syndicate is a group of golfers who play together at the Bridge Pa course in Hastings while The Wild Kiwis are a bunch of friends that are spread over all parts of New Zealand,” Ormond said this week.

   Gussy Godiva, the dam of Eva Godiva, was the winner of four races including two in Australia and has built a good record at stud with nearly all of her foals having won.

   Her first foal was Rios (by Hussonet) who won six races including the Group 2 Wellington Guineas while the second foal was Roman Emperor (by Montjeu), who only won two races but one of those was the Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m).

   Volgus (2 wins) and Omana (1 win) are others out of the mare who have been successful in New Zealand while Chairman Wind has had seven starts in Singapore for a second and a third.

   Gussy Godiva is out of the Grosvenor mare Sneetch, who won three races and finished third in a Group 1 New Zealand Oaks. She has spent most of her breeding life in Australia and Ormond has sold most of her male progeny and kept the fillies.

   He sold Chairman Wind (by Medaglia D’Oro) for $A150,000 and also sold a full-brother to Eva Godiva for $A400,000 at the 2014 Australian Easter yearling sales.

   “The latest one we sold was a colt by Snitzel who was bought by the China Horse Club for $A375,000 at this year’s Magic Millions sale on the Gold Coast,” Ormond said.

   “He is called Augustus and is trained by Chris Waller. He hasn’t raced yet but he’s had a trial and goes very well.”

   Ormond said he desperately wanted a filly by Redoute’s Choice out of Gussy Godiva as that stallion’s cross with Last Tycoon mares has been hugely successful and he wanted a well bred filly to continue the breed.

   “The mare is now 18 years old so she is getting on,” Ormond said. But we’ve got this one out of her and so we are very happy.”

   Gussy Godiva is back in New Zealand and has a filly foal at foot by Per Incanto and is now in foal to Charm Spirit.

   Ormond said the dream for him and his partners is for Eva Godiva to contest the Group 1 New Zealand Oaks (2400m) at Trentham in March but admits she will need to progress a lot in the interim.

   “She has only just won a lowly-rated maiden race at New Plymouth so you can’t get carried away,” he said.

   “She’s no sprinter and, who knows, she could be better as a four or five-year-old but if she was to win another one quickly we would have to look at the New Zealand Oaks.”


Hugo shows who is boss

   Hastings trainer John Bary has big plans in the coming month for Hugo The Boss, who chalked up his second win from six starts on Wednesday of last week.

   The Stratum colt is likely to have his next start in the Group 1 $225,000 Levin Classic (1600m) at Trentham on January 14 and then could be headed for the Listed $250,000 Karaka Three-year-old Mile (1600m) at Ellerslie on January 29.

   Bary took Hugo The Boss north to the Tauranga meeting last week where he contested a $7000 Rating 65 race over 1400 metres against older horses.

   The colt suffered interference soon after the start of the race which put him back to near last in the 11 horse field. He then suffered another check 400 metres from the finish but rider Cameron Lammas didn’t panic and weaved a passage through the field in the home straight to get the horse up for a long head victory.

   Hugo The Boss has always been held in high regard by Bary and led all the way to win his race debut over 1000 metres at Tauherenikau in October last year. He resumed in a fresh campaign with a fourth over 1400 metres at Ashburton in October this year and had recorded a seventh and an eighth in two subsequent 1200-metre races before last week’s win.

   Mike Sanders, who manages most of the syndicates for John Bary’s stable, said this week that Hugo The Boss has always shown a lot but he was a horse that tended to over-race and the trick has been to get him to race more kindly.

   “Cameron got him to settle at Tauranga and he was almost put over the running rail at one stage so it was a pretty big performance,” Sanders said.

    “He really showed a great turn of foot over the final stages.”

   John Bary outlayed $100,000 to buy Hugo The Boss from the premier session at the 2015 Karaka yearling sales and then set about gathering a group of people to race the colt.

   He is now owned by the Best Dressed Syndicate, which consists of Taradale couple Alan and Paula Keall, Innes Nesbitt (Hastings), Narendra Balia and Blair and Denise Martin (Auckland), Wayne Higgs and Gavin Dunnett (Christchurch), Bill Gleeson (Palmerston North), Peter Gillespie and Lawrie Bolton (Tauranga) and Heath Newton, who lives in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales.

   Hugo The Boss is out of the Zabeel mare Dressed, who was a winner over 1600 metres in Australia and is from the family of Virage De Fortune, who won eight races including the Group 1 Australia Stakes at Moonee Valley and the Group 1 QTC Sires’ Produce Stakes. The fourth dam in the pedigree is the champion Australian racemare Emancipation, who won 19 races and six of them at Group 1 level.


New Year’s Day races

   Hawke’s Bay Racing will stage one of its most popular race days on the Hastings racecourse this Sunday.

   The annual New Year’s Day race meeting promises to be a fun filled occasion with plenty of free activities for the kids as well as live music and great racing action for the adults to enjoy.

   Pack a picnic or sample the fabulous local food and wine Hawke's Bay has to offer at the Hastings track.

   There is an eight race programme carded, with the first timed for 12.52pm and the last at 5.11pm.

   Hawke’s Bay Racing is offering special early-bird deals for admission and Members Stand passes. Admission will be $10.00 per person until 2pm tomorrow (December 31) and $15.00 thereafter, with those under 18 free.

   Members Stand passes can be purchased for $30 up until 2pm tomorrow and will sell for $35.00 on race day.

   A punters club will be operating on the day, and tickets will be available at $10.00 each.


Johnson suspended

   An improper riding charge against Chris Johnson has been downgraded to careless riding with the leading South Island jockey pleading guilty.

   It arose from an incident in a race at Ashburton on December 16 in which he was originally alleged to have directed his mount Pippi Rea inwards causing severe crowding to Radiant.

   After hearing evidence from all parties, the Judicial Control Authority downgraded the charge to one of careless riding to which Johnson admitted. He has been suspended from January 2 to January 14.


Hasselhoof bled

   The summer campaign of the stakes winner Hasselhoof is over.

   The son of Tavistock finished seventh in the Group 1 Zabeel Classic at Ellerslie on Monday and a subsequent veterinary examination revealed the gelding had bled.

   Trained at Ruakaka by Donna Logan and Chris Gibbs, Hasselhoof has won six of his 13 starts including the Group 2 Rich Hill Mile at Ellerslie this time last year..


Heading north

   Son Of Maher will head to next month’s Wellington meeting at the top of his game after last season’s Group 1 Levin Classic runner-up lumped 61kg to an easy victory at Wingatui on Monday.

   “He’ll run in the Anniversary Handicap and the Thorndon Mile,” said Michael Pitman, who trains with his son Matthew.

   “We’re also thinking about the Douro Cup so he could race on three consecutive Saturdays.”

   Son Of Maher has recorded four wins and five seconds from only 14 starts.


Ellerslie return

   Improving filly Storytime is likely to make a return trip to Auckland next month.

   The Savabeel three-year-old finished runner-up to the unbeaten Volpe Veloce in the Group 2 Eight Carat Classic (1600m) in her first Ellerslie appearance on Boxing Day.

   “She went a lovely race and she handled the track well so we’ll have no fears about going back,” said Evan Rayner, who prepares the filly with his daughter J. J.

   “She’s eligible for the Karaka Three-year-old Mile and that’s worth $250,000. We’ll probably give her a freshen-up for that and her main aim is the New Zealand Oaks in March.”


   Eva Godiva, in the cerise colours, shows great determination to out-finish It’s Pandemonium for a half-head victory in a maiden three-year-old race over 1600 metres at New Plymouth last Saturday. The well bred filly could now be headed for bigger things in the coming months.



Track Work 29 Dec 2016

Racing: Moss 29/12/16

 (By John Jenkins)



   Moss Jazz, entered for the Maiden 1600-metre race at Hastings on New Year’s Day, worked well in partnership with stablemate Zed Leppelin in a 1200-metre gallop at this morning’s Hastings track session.

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

   Moss Jazz and Zed Leppelin worked in from the 1200-metre peg in 1:24.8, running the first 600 metres in 45.4 and then quickening over the last 600 in 39.4.

   Moss Jazz finished a good third over 1300 metres at the last Hawke’s Bay meeting and has drawn well at barrier five in the last race on Sunday.

   My Tommy was kept under a good hold throughout 1000 metres in 1:16.5, the last 600 in 46.5. He looks in good order and should be one of the main chances in the Rating 65 race over 1400 metres at Hastings on Sunday.

   Red Tiara sprinted 600 metres in 38.7s in preparation for the Maiden Fillies and Mares 1400 at Hastings while Powerade was assigned to two 600-metre runs, the first in an easy 44.5 and the second much faster in 39.7. He makes a fresh start in the Rating 65 race over 1400 metres at Sunday’s Hawke’s Bay meeting.

   A Nadeem three-year-old filly trained by Kelly Burne clocked 43.6 for an easy 600 metres while a Redwood three-year-old and one by Nom du Jeu, both in the Thompson/Brown stable, ran 600 metres together in 40.8.

   A Pins-Alleyway three-year-old and one by Keeper out of Wooden Doll worked together over 800 metres in 57.7, the last 600 in 42.6 while a Shinko King three-year-old filly ran a solo 600 metres in 41.2.

   A Roc de Cambes three-year-old filly and one by Nom de Jeu worked together over 800 metres in 55.6, the last 600 in 40.9. They are two others in the Lowry/Cullen stable.




HB’s strong representation at yearling sales 23 Dec 2016

 (By John Jenkins)

   Lime Country Thoroughbreds, Hawke’s Bay’s leading vendor at recent Karaka thoroughbred auctions, will have a nine horse draft in the premier session of next month’s yearling sales.

   The two day premier sale will be held on January 30 and 31 followed by three days of the select sale from February 1 to February 3 and one day of the festival sale on February 5.

   Lime Country Thoroughbreds sold four yearlings, as agents for clients, at this year’s premier yearling sale for an aggregate of $635,000 and an average of $158,750.

   Their top priced yearling at the premier session was a colt by Ocean Park out of the Viking Ruler mare Cassata, which was knocked down to the bid of a New South Wales buyer for $185,000.

   The colt was bred by Dannevirke couple Kevin and Julie Taylor and they own four of the nine yearlings Lime Country Thoroughbreds has entered for the upcoming premier sale.

   The Taylors will offer one of the first from the stock of champion New Zealand-bred galloper Dundeel, a colt out of the Fusaichi Pegasus mare Assertive Angel. The yearling is from the family of Assertive Lad, who won eight races and was the champion Australian two-year-old in the 1999-2000 season.

   The Taylors sold a colt by champion Australian sire Redoute’s Choice out of La Praline for $160,000 at last January’s sales and will offer a colt by Savabeel out of the mare this time.

   La Praline, by Anabaa, was the winner of four races and is a daughter of the Taylors’ former high class racemare Viennetta, whose five wins included the Group 2 Auckland Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes.

   The other two Taylor-owned yearlings on offer are a filly by Smart Missile out of a full-sister to Viennetta and a colt by O’Reilly out of the General Nediym mare Noisette.

   Jo Griffin, who operates Lime Country Thoroughbreds with husband Greg, said this week that her pick of their premier session draft is a filly by the boom Australian sire I Am Invincible out of the High Chaparral mare Different To.

   “She is a yearling that has come over from Australia for us to put through the sale,” Griffin said.

   “Not many people have seen her yet but she is a stunning filly.”

   I Am Invincible was leading Australian first season sire in 2013-14 and has already left nearly 20 stakes winners.

   The mare Different To is a half-sister to Dorabella, who won five races including the Group 1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas and Group 1 Captain Cook Stakes.

   Lime Country Thoroughbreds sold a colt by Rip Van Winkle out of the Anabaa mare C’est la Vie for $170,000 at last January’s sales and have a filly by Reliable Man out of C’est la Vie as part of their draft this time. The filly is owned by her Waikato breeders Russell and Robyn Rogers and is out of a full-sister to the Group 1 Railway Stakes winner Imananabaa.

   Another yearling in the Lime Country Thoroughbreds premier draft is a colt by the outstanding sire Tavistock out of the Zenno Rob Roy mare Zenada and from a strong Australian family while the others are a colt by O’Reilly and a filly by Australian sire Epaulette.

   The O’Reilly colt is out of a half-sister to the Singapore Horse of the Year in War Affair, who has won 15 races and was the champion Singapore two-year-old, three-year-old and four-year-old of his year.

   The Epaulette filly is a grand-daughter of Wrap Around, who was a multiple group winner of nine races in Australia.

   Although Lime Country Thoroughbreds had a successful premier sale last January their top priced yearling actually went through the select sale.

   It was a colt by Jimmy Choux out of the Testa Rossa mare Diva von Tessa. He was offered on behalf of Havelock North couple Richard and Liz Wood and was sold to Big Red Farm, Japan, for $210,000, which was one of the highest prices at that select sale.

   The Woods owned and raced Jimmy Choux, who was a five-time Group 1 winner and finished runner-up in the Group 1 Cox Plate. The mare Diva von Tessa was a winner over 1200 metres in Australia and is from the family of the unbeaten Black Caviar and the outstanding race performer and now successful sire All Too Hard.

   The Woods will offer a full-brother to that Jimmy Choux-Diva von Tessa colt as part of the 15 yearling draft Lime Country Thoroughbreds has entered for the upcoming Karaka select sale.

   Among the others in their select sale draft are a colt and a filly by successful sire Shocking, two colts by Alamosa, a filly by Savabeel, a filly by Eurozone and eight yearlings by their former resident sire Niagara.

   Lime Country Thoroughbreds will have a public parade of all the yearlings they will offer at the upcoming sales on Wednesday, January 11. The parade will be at the yearling barn on Taihape Road beginning at 11am.

   Endsleigh Thoroughbreds, owned by Hastings surgeon Noel Nicholson, will offer two yearlings at the select sale, a colt by Shamexpress and a filly by Rip Van Winkle.

   The Shamexpress colt is out of the Bin Ajwaad mare Snapwood, who has left the winners New Vision, Sunny Pearl and Big Ready.

   The Rip Van Winkle filly is out of a Rock Of Gibraltar mare who is a half-sister to Le Zagaletta, who was a multiple group winner of 14 races in Australia.

   Wainui Limited, from Hastings, will also offer two yearlings at the select sale, a colt by Per Incanto and one by Showcasing.

   The Per Incanto colt is a grandson of the top class racemare Fayreform, who included three Group 1 victories among her eight wins and is the dam of this year’s Group 1New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes winner Perfect Fit.

   The Showcasing colt is out of the former top racemare Emerald, who won six races including the Group 1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas and finished second in the Group 1 Wellington Cup.

   The other Hawke’s Bay-based vendor at the select sale is Waipukurau’s Beckam Equine, which will offer a colt by Makfi out of the Fly To The Stars mare Stellar Dream.


New Year’s Day races

   The annual Hawke’s Bay New Year’s Day race meeting, one of the most popular days on the racing calendar, promises to be a fun filled occasion with plenty of free activities for the kids as well as live music and great racing action for the adults to enjoy.

   Pack a picnic or sample the fabulous local food and wine Hawke's Bay has to offer at the Hastings track.

   There is an eight race programme carded, with the first timed for 12.52pm and the last at 5.11pm.

   Hawke’s Bay Racing is offering special early-bird deals for admission and Members Stand passes. Admission will be $10.00 per person until 2pm on December 31 and $15.00 thereafter, with those under 18 free.

   Members Stand passes can be purchased for $30 up until 2pm on December 31 and will sell for $35.00 on the day.

   A punters club will be operating on the day, and tickets will be available at $10.00 each.


Stake increased

   The FastTrack insurance initiative will add $5000 to the stake for the open sprint at Hastings on January 1.
   The Russell Roads City of Hastings Cup (1300m) will now have a total stake of $20,000.

   BrokerWeb CEO David Archer said that FastTrack was delighted to announce the first added-stake race.

   “We would like to thank everyone who has switched their insurances to FastTrack,” Archer said. “Without your support these added-stake races would not happen.”
   FastTrack also had big plans for 2017, when more added-stake races would be announced.


Funeral today

   The funeral for jockey Rebecca Black, who was killed in a race fall at Gore last Sunday, will be held at the Gore Racecourse at 1pm today.

   New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing is collecting funds on behalf of Gallop South who are in the process of setting up a formal Trust for Rebecca’s three children. This account will be audited and receipts for donations can be provided if requested. For any person wishing to donate to this fund the bank account number is 01-0517-0063944-06.


Award winner

   Hawke’s Bay couple Mike and Bronwyn Griffin are the recipients of the Hawke’s Bay Racehorse Owners’ by-monthly award for the months of October and November.

   The Griffins own the capable mare Missy Moo, who won a Rating 65 race over 1400 metres at Tauherenikau on October 6 and followed that up with another victory in a Rating 65 race over 1350 metres at Otaki on Melbourne Cup day.


Sacred Elixir back on track

   Top three-year-old Sacred Elixir is making smooth progress in his build-up toward another Group One title.

   “He had his first gallop last Saturday morning and he’s coming up super, I couldn’t be happier with him,” Cambridge trainer Tony Pike said.

   “He looks great and we’ll just keep him ticking over until the Karaka Three-year-old Mile.”

   Successful in last season’s Group 1 J J Atkins Stakes at Eagle Farm, Sacred Elixir has this term added the Group 2 Moonee Valley Vase and the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude to his winning tally.

   He also finished runner-up in the Group 1 VRC Derby at Flemington before he signed off for the spring.

   The son of Pour Moi has the $1 million Group 1 Vodafone New Zealand Derby as the final target of this season and he is likely to take in the Group 2 Avondale Guineas a fortnight before the Ellerslie feature on March 4.


Change of stable

   Stephen Marsh is the new trainer of the stakes performer Mystery Show.

   “She’s in work, but we haven’t made any plans just yet for her,” the Cambridge horseman said.

   Previously prepared by James Bridge, Mystery Show has won two of her six starts and she also placed in the Group 3 Gold Trail Stakes at Hastings and the Listed Soliloquy Stakes at Ellerslie. She hasn’t raced since she finished seventh in the Group 1 NZ 1000 Guineas.

   “She’s a lovely filly and she enjoyed a spell after she got back from the South Island,” Marsh said.

   The top priced yearling from the Lime Country Thoroughbreds draft at last January’s Karaka yearling sales, a colt by Jimmy Choux out of Diva von Tessa, enters the outside parade ring there before being sold for $210,000 to Big Red Farm in Japan. A full-brother will be offered at next month’s select sale.






Track Work 22 Dec 2016

Racing: Knight’s 22/12/16

 (By John Jenkins)



   Knight’s Princess and Perfect Shock, two members of the John Bary stable, turned in a very quick 1000-metre gallop at this morning’s Hastings track session.

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

   Knight’s Princess and Perfect Shock sped over 1000 metres together in 60.5s, running the first 400 metres in 25.2 and coming home the last 600 in 35.3.

   Knight’s Princess has recorded two second placings from her last two starts and is entered for the Rating 65 Fillies and Mares 1400-metre race at Rotorua next Tuesday.

   Miss Wilson, back in the John Bary stable after a campaign in Australia, worked on her own over 1000 metres in 1:1.7, the last 600 in 35.7. She won a jumpout over 1000 metres at Hastings earlier this month and could kick off a new campaign at Trentham next month.

   Tiger Tim and High Spirits worked together over 1000 metres in 1:3.4, the last 600 in 36.9 while The Cossack looked to be travelling better than Bluesuede Shoes at the end of 1000 metres in 1:6.5, the last 600 in 37.

   Savvy Dreams was keen to go faster when working with stablemate Alpine Julz over 1000 metres in 1:13.6, the last 600 in 42/4. They are both in the Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen stable.

   Red Tiara had trainer Kelly Burne aboard when running a solo 1000 metres in 1:11.6, the last 600 in 41.2 while Proficient was kept under a good hold over 1000 metres, the last 600 in 45.9. She went a good race for fifth at the last Hawke’s Bay meeting and is likely to start next at Hastings on New Year’s Day.

   Xcuses Xcuses sprinted 600 metres in 35.9 while a Fully Fledged three-year-old filly ran an easy 600 metres in 44.9.

   Dukebox worked over a round on his own and was timed to run the last 1200 metres in 1:23.8, the final 600 in 40.3.




Track Work 20 Dec 2016

Racing: Adventador 20/12/16



(By John Jenkins)


   Nice solo workouts by Adventador and Proficient were the highlights at this morning’s Hastings track session.

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

   Adventador was given two easy 600-metre runs, the first taking 46s and the second in 42.8s. The big Fast ‘N’ Famous gelding looks to have improved since his fresh up seventh over 1200 metres at Awapuni on December 10 and will have his next start in the Open 1300-metre sprint at Hastings on New Year’s Day. That race will serve as a lead up to the Group 1 Telegraph Handicap (1200m) at Trentham on January 21, a race he won this year.

   Proficient was also kept under a good hold when working over 1000 metres, the last 600 in 45.6. She turned in a good effort for fifth over 1300 metres at the last Hawke’s Bay meeting and will now line up in the Maiden Fillies & Mares 1400 at Hastings on New Year’s Day.

    Oscar’s Shadow, another of the Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen team likely to start at Hastings on New Year’s Day, was given two easy 600-metre runs, the first taking 46s and the second in 43. She looks to have improved a lot in recent weeks and won a 750-metre jumpout at Hastings on December 9.

   Dukebox worked over a round on his own and was timed to run the last 1400 metres in 1:27.2 and final 600 in 40.8s while stablemate Red Tiara worked in at three-quarter pace from the 1000-metre peg and quickened slightly over the last 600 in 39.5.

   Superveloce was kept under a good hold when running an easy 1000 metres, the last 600 in 46.2 while stablemate Donardo took 43.6 and 43.4 for two easy 600-metre runs. They are two others from the Lowry/Cullen stable who could line up at the Hawke’s Bay meeting on New Year’s Day.

   A Redwood three-year-old and one by Nom de Jeu worked together over an easy 800 metres in 58.2 while a Nadeem three-year-old ran a solo 600 metres in 50.5.

   Lamborghini was given two easy 600-metre runs in 47.2 and 44.1 while stablemate Suvano was given the same assignment and clocked 44 and 40.7.




Zed Leppelin completes a winning double 16 Dec 2016

(By John Jenkins)


   Hastings-trained Zed Leppelin may be seven years of age but he is a horse that looks to be only now reaching his full potential.

   The Zed gelding recorded his third and most impressive win when taking out a Rating 65 race over 2000 metres on his home track on Thursday of last week.

   Carrying topweight of 59kg, Zed Leppelin looked to be under pressure when rider Johnathan Parkes was urging him along inside the last 600 metres and the horse was then momentarily blocked for a run on the point of the home turn. But once he got clear he showed good acceleration to drive between horses and score a half head win.

   It was Zed Leppelin’s second win on end, following a three-quarter length victory in another Rating 65 race over 2100 metres at Hastings on November 6. It was also his third success from 19 starts.

   Johnathan Parkes has been aboard Zed Leppelin in his last two starts and agreed that the horse’s form had been inconsistent in the past but he now looks to be racing a lot better and could go on to bigger things.

   Zed Leppelin is trained on the Hastings track by the husband and wife team of Mick Brown and Sue Thompson and they agree that Zed Leppelin has had his share of issues but could now be on the right track.

   Brown said this week it has taken a long time to work the horse out and they also had problems with him hitting his legs and taking small nicks out of them when working on the plough training track at the Hastings course.

   “We now turn him out for a 10 day break after each race just to keep him fresh and seems to suit him. And I always keep a hold of him when galloping on the plough so that he doesn’t hit himself,” Brown said.

    “I think when he was hitting himself it was causing him to lose confidence.”

   Brown and Thompson are now looking at starting Zed Leppelin in a Rating 75 race over a middle distance but there is a shortage of those races in the Central Districts in the coming weeks.

   “There is a Rating 75 race over 2300 metres at Awapuni on January 7 but that is about all there is for him coming up,” Brown said.

   Zed Leppelin was bred by Hawke’s Bay couple Peter and Sharon Robertson and is raced by them in partnership with Hong Kong-based Marcus Glucina.


Verna Audrey adds another

   Hastings-owned Verna Audrey notched her third win in the South Island when successful in a Rating 75 race at Wingatui on Wednesday of last week.

   The Shocking four-year-old mare, aided by a great ride by jockey Gosen Jogoo, scored a length win over 1600 metres in a performance that suggested she could go on to better things in the future.

   Jogoo settled Verna Audrey midfield against the inside rail in the early stages and was able to improve her position to be just behind the leaders approaching the home turn. Staying to the inside he was able to secure a rails run inside the leaders and the mare dashed clear over the final stages for a decisive win.

   Verna Audrey was bred by Hastings man Ian Holloway who races her in partnership with his Rotorua–based brother Graeme along with Chris Cowan (Hastings) and Rowland Bartlett (Paraparaumu).

   The horse started out in the Hastings stable of John Bary but is now prepared at Washdyke by Michael Daly, who has prepared her for all three of her wins. The first was in a 1200-metre maiden race at Timaru in March and the second was in a Rating 65 race over 1400 metres at Motukarara in October.

   Holloway has three other horses in work with Michael Daly, including a three-year-old half-sister to Verna Audrey by Any Suggestions. She is called Rosie Jane, who has been unplaced from one start.

    He also has a Nadeem two-year-old colt, who is a half-brother to Verna Audrey, but he hasn’t raced yet.


Waddell back in action

   Jason Waddell was back in action after a lengthy suspension when he rode at the Te Aroha trials on Tuesday.

   The 30-year-old jockey is coming off a 12-month ban handed down a year ago after he was found guilty of acting detrimentally to the interests of racing and of improper riding.

   They arose from an incident at an Avondale trial meeting in September, 2015, when Waddell’s actions originally brought a charge of foul riding after his mount severely interfered with a horse ridden by Samantha Collett.

   “Jason had a meeting recently with chief stipe John Oatham and the Racing Integrity Unit’s Andy Cruickshank to prove he’s fit to ride and they have granted him a licence to ride trackwork and at trials,” Waddell’s agent Darryl Anderson said.

   “His hope is to be back race riding on December 28 or thereabouts. It won’t be before then.

   “Jason is coming back with a very positive attitude. Over the last 12 months I have seen a definite change in him and it’s all for the better.”


Marsh has Sydney plans

   Promising stayer Chocante will try to add to his impressive record in tomorrow’s Group 3 $100,000 Manawatu Cup at Awapuni and trainer Stephen Marsh has a long-term Australian plan for his rising staying star.

   Marsh has been far from surprised by the rapid progress of the four-year-old, who won’t be over-taxed through the summer.

   “He’s always looked like a top cups horse in the making, he’s very progressive with a very bright future,” Marsh said.

   “We’ll look after him and he’ll probably only have a couple more runs before we give him a break and we could well be looking at Sydney in the autumn.”

   A son of Shocking, Chocante, broke his maiden as a three-year-old in April and following further successes in the spring at Matamata and Te Rapa he was an impressive last-start winner of the Group 3 Counties Cup.

   He sat three wide without cover and was still able to round his effort off strongly in the run home for a clear-cut victory.

   “He’s done well and I wanted to give him a bit of time between runs,” Marsh said.

   “The Manawatu Cup will be his next start and I’m pretty relaxed about things after that. I’ll wait and see how he comes through Awapuni and maybe look at the City of Auckland Cup.”

   Chocante will have a change of rider this weekend with Danielle Johnson replacing Craig Grylls, who pleaded guilty to a charge of careless riding at Ellerslie last Sunday and was suspended for three days.

   Meanwhile, stablemate No More Tears has been set for a New Year’s Day Group 1 feature.

   “She’s back in the stable and she’ll run in the Railway at Ellerslie in a fresh state,” Marsh said.

   No More Tears, who has two first-up victories to her credit, hasn’t raced since she finished a close eighth in the Group 2 Auckland Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes (1400m) at Pukekohe on November 19.


Xtravagant wins trial

   Dual Group 1 winner Xtravagant gave his trainers a pleasant surprise at the Te Aroha trials on Tuesday.

   The Pentire four-year-old, who is being set for a first-up tilt at the Group 1 J. R. & N. Berkett Telegraph at Trentham on January 21, won his 1000-metre heat in the hands of Matthew Cameron.

   “We didn't think he'd be winning it because we haven't done a lot with him,” said Stephen Autridge, who prepares Xtravagant with Jamie Richards.

   “We're really happy. He's only half-fit and it was a right-handed trial. He'll have another trial left-handed and then go to Wellington.

   “He was here for education. We've just got to put Australia behind us and forget about it because he's shown us he's coming along as well as ever now.”


Premature end to career

   The promising career of Emily Monk has been cut short.

   “She’s been retired. She’s always had a few issues and it’s a shame because she had tremendous potential,” said Paul Richards, who trained the O’Reilly mare with Peter and Dawn Williams.

   Raced by her co-breeder Richard Rutherford of Beltana Stud, Emily Monk won seven of her 14 starts and she ran fourth in the Group 1 NZ Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes at Te Aroha.


Derby-winning jockey dies

   Former champion English jockey Walter Swinburn has died at the age of 55.

   He was most famous for winning the Group 1 English Derby aboard the brilliant Shergar and he also won the classic with Shahrastani and Lammtarra.

   Swinburn, who rode his first winner in 1978, retired at the age of 38 in 2000 and he subsequently took up training in 2004.

   He prepared the winners of more than 250 races, including four Group Three events before handing in his licence in 2011.


First for Frankel

   Frankel won 10 Group 1 events during his sensational racing career and last Sunday he produced his first Group 1 winner.

   Japanese filly Soul Striking remained undefeated in her third start to claim the Group 1 Hanshin Juvenile Fillies (1600m).

   Soul Striking is the first foal out of the six-time Group One winning Monsun mare Stacelita.

   Curraghmore Stud will offer a grey colt bred on this same cross at the New Zealand Bloodstock Premier Yearling Sale in January.

   Bred by Raffles Dancers, Lot 181 is out of the multiple Group winning Monsun mare Give Me Five.




1: Zed Leppelin (wearing blue blinkers) drives between horses under the urgings of jockey Johnathan Parkes to get up for a half-head win in the Rating 65 race over 2000 metres at last week’s Hawke’s Bay meeting.



2: The husband and wife training partnership of Mick Brown and Sue Thompson talk to jockey Johnathan Parkes following their success with Zed Leppelin last week.


Track Work 15 Dec 2016

Racing: Cajun 15/12/16



Cajun was the only horse to work at any pace in another very quiet session at the Hastings track this morning.

   The Keeninsky mare worked on the plough, which provided soft footing, and ran a solo 1000 metres in 1:9.4, the last 600 in 40.5. She finished well back in the Manawatu Cup Prelude (2000m) at Awapuni last Saturday.

   Dare To Rock, entered for the two-year-old race at Awapuni this Saturday, was not doing much more than half-pace when running 800 metres. She is a filly by Rock ‘N’ Pop and was a winner at last Friday’s Hastings jumpouts.

   A Pins-Alleyway filly and a Keeper Filly, both in the Lowry/Cullen stable, worked in at three-quarter pace from the 800-metre peg in 60.5, the last 600 in 45.9.



Hastings Trackwork 13 Dec 2016

Racing: My Tommy 13/12/16



(By John Jenkins)


   My Tommy, a likely starter at Thursday’s Otaki meeting, was one of only two horses timed in a very quiet Hastings trackwork session this morning.

   A number of trainers had horses competing at the Foxton trials later in the day.

   My Tommy worked in from the 1000-metre peg on the plough (good) in 1:6.3, coming home the last 600 in 38.9. He was in the unusual role of pacemaker over 1600 metres at Waipukurau last start and weakened in the final stages to finish fifth.

   The Towkay four-year-old is likely to start in the Rating 65 race over 1600 metres at Otaki.

   Red Tiara was the other horse to gallop and she sprinted 600 metres in 36.6. The Per Incanto mare was forced to cover plenty of extra ground when sixth over 1400 metres at Hastings last start.



Miss Wilson shows out at Hastings jumpouts 9 Dec 2016

   The well bred mare Miss Wilson stole the show at today’s Hastings jumpouts when she cruised to an easy win in a 1000-metre heat and clocked a quick time in the process.

   The Stratum mare, a half-sister to five time Group 1 winner and now successful sire Jimmy Choux, is back John Bary’s Hastings stable after being campaigned in Australia, where she was a winner over 1400 metres at Ballarat in October last year.

   There were six heats run up against the inside rail on the course proper, which provided firm footing.

   Miss Wilson had experienced jockey Jonathan Riddell aboard in her 1000-metre heat. She was only opposed by three others and trailed the pacemaking Powerade until well into the home straight before powering past that runner and going on to record a 1-1/4 length win. Her winning time of 58.1s was more than two seconds faster than the other heat over 1000 metres.

   Miss Wilson also recorded a second, two thirds and two fourths while trained by Simon Morrish in Victoria. Bary said she could be seen back racing in New Zealand next month.


Jumpout results.-

Heat 1, 400m: Shocking 2yr-old filly (Z Thomson) 1, Ocean Park 2yr-old colt 2, Zed 2yr-old gelding 3. Five starters. Margins: Nose, 2-1/2 lengths. Time: 27.9s. Winner trained by Kylie Wakely, Hastings.

Heat 2, 750m: St Reims 5yr-old mare (K Hercock) 1, Shinko King 5yr-old mare 2, Don Eduardo 4yr-old mare 3. Four starters. Margins: 1 length, ½ length. Time: 48.7s. Winner trained by Katie Hercock, Hastings.

Heat 3, 750m: Matt Caine (S Thompson) 1, Burgundy 2yr-old gelding 2, Nom de Jeu 3yr-old filly 3. Three starters. Margins: ¾ length, 1 length. Time: 44.9s. Winner trained by Butch Thomas, Hastings.

Heat 4, 750m: Oscar’s Shadow (J Bassett) 1, Fully Fledged 3yr-old filly 2, The Traveller 3. Three starters. Margins: 2 lengths, 9 lengths. Time: 44.7s. Winner trained by Guy Lowry & Grant Cullen, Hastings.

Heat 5, 1000m: Dare To Rock (J Bassett) 1, Jimmy Choux 3yr-old gelding 2, Roc de Cambes 3yr-old filly 3. Four starters. Margins: ¾ length, 1 length. Time: 60.3s. Winner trained by Guy Lowry & Grant Cullen, Hastings.

Heat 6, 1000m: Miss Wilson (J Riddell) 1, Powerade 2, Hugo The Boss 3. Four starters. Margins: 1-1/2 lengths, 2 lengths. Time: 58.1s. Winner trained by John Bary, Hastings.


Missteeflying’s retirement now put on hold 1 Dec 2016

   Missteeflying, a horse that was on the brink of retirement, earned a reprieve when she scored an upset win in a $20,000 Rating 65 race at last Sunday’s Cromwell meeting.

   Havelock North’s Hamish MacGregor, who heads the all Hawke’s Bay syndicate that races the mare, said this week that he and some of the other members had all but given up on the seven-year-old mare after her disappointing last start performance, when 13th out of 16 runners over 2000 metres at Riccarton on November 12.

   “Sunday was pretty much her last chance for most of us,” MacGregor said this week.

   “After her last race she was fast running out of chances.”

   As if she seemed to sense the writing was on the wall, Missteeflying turned in probably her best performance to date in the 2030-metre event at Cromwell. The speed was on from the outset in the race and rider Terry Moseley settled the Perfectly Ready mare fourth last, and about 15 lengths off the pacemaker. He then sent her on a forward move around the field from the 800 metres and they were quickly in a challenging position, wide out, rounding the home bend.

   Missteeflying hit the front soon after and raced clear of her rivals over the final stages to win by 3 lengths.

   It was the mare’s fifth victory but her first since taking out a Rating 65 race over 1800 metres at Kurow in December last year. She was trained by Awapuni’s Lisa Latta when she won her maiden race over 2200 metres at Hastings in January 2014 but Riccarton-based Andrew Carston has prepared her for her four subsequent victories.

   MacGregor said Missteeflying used to race well on rain affected tracks when she was younger but wasn’t coping with the wet tracks when campaigned during this past winter.

   “She used to like them but as she has got older she seems to like the firmer ground,” MacGregor added.

   The mare was given a fortnight spell after beating only one horse home in a 2200-metre race on a slow track at Oamaru in July and didn’t resume racing again until the Ashburton meeting on October 15.

   “She lost her rider in a 1400-metre race that day but we backed her up a week later and she ran home nicely for eighth over 1600 metres,” MacGregor recalled.

   “We then stepped her up to 2000 metres next time and had Andrew’s apprentice on. She sat three-wide for most of the race and never had any energy at the finish.”

   Following that lack-lustre performance MacGregor said he lost the confidence to back the mare at Cromwell last Sunday and so he missed out on her $42.50 win dividend and $7.80 for a place.

   “I didn’t back her but some of the others in the syndicate did,” MacGregor said.

   “I’m just glad that she showed a return to form and it has put a bit more interest back into things.”

   MacGregor has raced other horses in the past, including the winners Kasend and Pop Hit, but says he has never had one that has won two races in a row and is hoping Missteeflying can achieve that feat in the coming weeks.

   “We are not sure where she will be racing next but the West Coast circuit is coming up so she could be going there,” he added.

   MacGregor bred Missteeflying in partnership with Peter Rochester, who also has a share in the syndicate. The other members are MacGregor’s wife Katherine, Ross and Caroline Caulton, Jeremy Harrison, Margaret Kenny, Barry and Wendy McGaveston, Andrew Mulligan, Rachel Pedersen and Ron and Pam White.


First time owner on a high

   Waipukurau’s Peter Butler’s first venture into racehorse ownership is certainly paying dividends.

   Butler is a member of the Te Akau 2014 Cups Syndicate, a group of dozen shareholders who race two horses from the Matamata stable of Stephen Autridge and Jamie Richards, one of them being the highly promising stayer Zambezi Warrior.

   The Pentire four-year-old has a record of four wins, two seconds and a third from only 11 starts and was an impressive last start winner over 1800 metres at New Plymouth on November 18. He is now down to start in a $27,500 Rating 85 race over 2200 metres at Ellerslie tomorrow and has been nominated for such races as the Group 3 $200,000 City Of Auckland Cup (2400m) at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day and both the Group 2 Wellington Cup (3200m) on January 21 and the Group 1 Auckland Cup (3200m) at Ellerslie in March.

   “He is a pretty exciting horse and will have another run at Ellerslie this Saturday and then hopefully go onto the some of the big cup races,” Butler said this week.

    “It’s just great to be involved with such a promising horse.”

    Although Zambezi Warrior has won four races he has also been unlucky on several other occasions. He lost all chance when another horse broke down and caused severe interference to him in a 2100-metre race at Ellerslie in February and was also badly hampered when another horse fell during the Valachi Downs Stakes (2100m) at Ellerslie on April 29, where he did remarkably well to recover and finish second.

   Peter Butler’s father raced horses so the urge to get involved has always been there. He decided to take up a share in a new syndicate being set up by Te Akau principal David Ellis and says he could not be happier with the outcome.

   “The Te Akau operation is very professional and, for an amateur like me, it is a great way of getting involved,” Butler said.

   “Twice now I’ve been to the races when Zambezi Warrior has won and I was the only one from the syndicate there so it was like I owned the horse outright.

   “There were three reasons I went into the syndicate. The first is that the horses all have top breeding. The second is that they have top trainers and the third is that that use top jockeys,” he added.

   Zambezi Warrior was part of a two horse package deal the syndicate is involved in. The other is the Zabeel four-year-old Amperage, who was a winner over 2100 metres at Wairoa in February.

   “Unfortunately Amperage hurt a fetlock but is recovering from that and will hopefully be racing again in the New Year,” Butler said.

   Peter Butler is the former Mayor of Central Hawke’s Bay and was recently elected onto the committee of the Waipukurau Jockey Club.


Dee taking on Rosehill

   Former Kiwi jockey Mick Dee heads to unfamiliar territory in Sydney this Saturday as he approaches a significant milestone in the latter stages of his apprenticeship.

   The Melbourne-based rider, who needs two city wins to lose his claim, will ride at Rosehill for the first time.

   The 20-year-old, who began his racing career from the Hastings stable of Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen, is booked to partner the Ciaron Maher-trained Hazzabeel in the Group 3 Festival Stakes (1500m) and is also likely to be aboard Husson Eagle in the Listed Starlight Stakes.

   Dee has ridden only once in Sydney when third in the Group 1 Metropolitan on the Godolphin-owned Allergic last month at Randwick.

   He was keen to stick with Hazzabeel after riding the former Perth-based horse to win the Listed Kilmore Cup (1600m) on November 20.

   "He just won the Kilmore Cup that well and I think Ciaron has got him back on track," Dee said. "He was originally going to go to Perth for the Kingston Town Stakes but due to flights getting cancelled he had to divert and change plans. There was this nice race in Sydney for him.”

   At what is an important stage in his career, Dee is keen to use tomorrow’s opportunity to show trainers he can compete against the senior riders without a claim.

   "It's also a good opportunity to get in a different area and be riding in these good races," said Dee, who is looking forward to the challenge as a senior rider.

   "I won the Kilmore Cup the other day and I've won a few other stakes races here in Melbourne, so I don't see why I can't take the next step," he said.


Brown suspended

   Expat Australian jockey Corey Brown has been suspended in Singapore for two months for failing to give a urine sample at a race meeting.

   Brown pleaded guilty last Friday to the charge and stewards took into account his circumstances at the meeting on October 9 when he became aware of a family emergency which meant he had to fly to Australia urgently.

   He was also fined $S2000 for negligently taking medication on that day which resulted in him being stood down. He will be out until January 27.


Wood on the move

   Central districts commentator Tom Wood has accepted a new calling role with the Singapore Turf Club.

   Wood’s final New Zealand meeting will be at Awapuni on December 17, and he will take up his Singapore appointment on January 3.


Hastings races

   Hawke’s Bay Racing will stage its annual twilight Christmas race meeting on the Hastings track next Thursday, December 8.

   At this stage there is an eight race programme planned, with the first race timed for 3.22pm and the last at 7.29pm.

   The main race will be the $8000 Dunstan Feeds Rising Stars Championship Qualifier, a 1200-metre sprint for Rating 75 horses.

   There will be a general admission charge of $10.00, with those under 18 free. There will be no charge for admission to the Members Stand.


Xtravagant primed

   Dual Group 1 winner Xtravagant is thriving ahead of his summer campaign.

   The Stephen Autridge and Jamie Richards-trained son of Pentire holds nominations for the Group 1 Sistema Railway Stakes (1200m) at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day and the Group 1 J.R. & N. Berkett Telegraph Stakes (1200m) at Trentham three weeks later.

   “He’s coming up really well and he’ll trial at Te Aroha on December 13 before any plans are firmed up for him,” Te Akau racing manager Brad Taylor said.

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