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Authentic Paddy finally gets his Group 1 success 28 Dec 2017

   There was no more deserving winner of last Tuesday’s Group 1 $200,000 Zabeel Classic at Ellerslie than Authentic Paddy, a horse part-owned by three Hawke’s Bay siblings of the Gray family.

   It was the eight-year-old’s 11th success from 77 career starts but, more importantly, it was his first triumph at the elite level after a string of minor placings in Group 1 events.

   He was lining up in the Cambridge Stud Zabeel Classic for the third year in a row, following third placings in both 2015 and last year. He has also been runner-up in consecutive runnings of the Captain Cook Stakes at Trentham and was third in this year’s Herbie Dyke Stakes at Te Rapa.

   Hastings sisters Marilyn Te Paa and Christine Gray and their Havelock North brother Tony Gray own Authentic Paddy in partnership with their Paraparaumu-based brother Phillip and their sister Janice Berry, who lives in Upper Hutt.

   Marilyn Te Paa said this week they usually travel around the country to watch Authentic Paddy race but most had their family’s home for Christmas so they watched the race it on Trackside instead.

   “It was a great thrill,” she said.

   “We were jumping up and down and yelling at the TV and it was just wonderful to see him finally get his Group 1 win.”

   The family members became involved in racehorse ownership through their late uncle Don Robinson, who bred Authentic Paddy as well as his younger half-brother The Rippa.

   “Our uncle passed away three years ago this Saturday and we bought Authentic Paddy and The Rippa off his estate,” Te Paa said.

   The Rippa, a four-year-old by Rip Van Winkle, has won twice from 10 starts and was an unlucky fifth over 1550m at last Saturday’s Manawatu meeting.

   Both horses are prepared by Awapuni trainer Lisa Latta and Te Paa said they all met at Awapuni last Saturday where they discussed tactics for Authentic Paddy in the Zabeel Classic.

   “We had a change of jockey and the plan was to let him go to the front and just lob along and that’s exactly what happened,” Te Paa added.

   Experienced jockey Trudy Thornton took Authentic Paddy to the front from the outset in the 2000m weight-for-age feature and set a dawdling pace in the early stages. She still hadn’t asked the horse to do too much coming to the home turn and when the challengers came in the straight he had plenty in reserve, surging clear in the final stages to win by 1-1/4 lengths.

   Thornton described the Howbaddouwantit gelding as “an absolute pleasure to ride.”

   “He knows his job out there and Lisa had him fit and ready to go,” she added.

    Lisa Latta described Authentic Paddy’s latest success as one of the most satisfying wins of her training career.

   “It’s just an absolute buzz,” Latta said. “He’s a lovely horse and he so deserved that. It’s been a great day for us.”

   “He needs a strong rider and Trudy does exactly what she’s told,” she added.

   Latta was at her home track at Awapuni last Saturday where she also celebrated a winning treble with That’s Amore, Lincoln’s Gal and Denny’s Lincoln.


Hunta Pence stepping up

   Hastings trainer Patrick Campbell has plans to step his promising galloper Hunta Pence up in distance following the horse’s dominant victory over 2100m at Otaki last week.

   Campbell has the $30,000 Summer Cup (2400m) at Trentham on January 27 in mind for the five-year-old and will probably give him one more race before that.

   “I’d like to try him over 2400 and he’ll probably have another run over 2100 at Awapuni next week to help prepare him,” Campbell said.

   Campbell owns Hunta Pence in partnership with Wellington’s Luke Walding and the son of No Excuse Needed has now won them four races from 21 starts.

   The horse only had five rivals at Otaki last week and was well ridden by top apprentice Sam Weatherley.

   Hunta Pence had over-raced in front when finishing fourth at Waipukurau at his most recent start but Weatherley got him to settle perfectly in the trail and he was cruising behind the leader Gorbachev as they entered the last 600m.

   Weatherley sent the horse forward to take control rounding the home turn and they raced away over the final stages to score by 2-1/4 lengths.

   Hunta Pence has come through the win in good order. He is a horse that doesn’t carry a lot of condition but has a big stride and certainly looks a good stayer in the making.


Well deserved win

   Handfull, bred and part-owned by Takapau’s Jenny Dalby, picked up a deserved win when taking out a $25,000 Rating 75 race over 1550m at Awapuni last Saturday.

   The Fully Fledged gelding was having his fourth race in a new campaign and it followed three consecutive second placings, over 1400m at Hastings, 1600m at Wanganui and 1550m at Awapuni.

   Jockey Dylan Turner settled Handfull in sixth place before lodging a claim half-way up the home straight and they managed to stave off the challengers to win by a neck.

   Handfull has rarely been far away in any of his 13 starts, with two wins, five seconds and a third to his credit. He is trained at Woodville by Shane Brown who said the horse has been a slow maturing type and is still learning how to race properly.

   “In 12 months he’ll be a better horse,” Brown said.

   “He is still doing a few things wrong and was changing legs in the straight there today.”

   Dalby has bred and raced thoroughbreds for many years, with two of her best being the top racemares Milo and Saunter.


De Koning causes an upset

   Taradale woman Judith Buckeridge was back in the winner’s circle when De Koning upset the punters when breaking through for a maiden win a at last Saturday’s Waikato meeting at Te Rapa.

   Buckeridge shares in the ownership of the Niagara three-year-old with some friends, including Cambridge trainer Fred Cornege. The horse won at odds of 18 to one.

   De Koning was sold for $13,000 as a weanling at a 2015 mixed bloodstock sale when offered by the former Hawke’s Bay-based Lime Country Thoroughbreds.

   He was having his sixth start last Saturday, with his previous best placings being a third and a fourth.

   Jockey Lynsey Satherley positioned him outside the leader from the start in the 1400m event and they went to the front at the top of the home straight. They were pressured over the final stages by first starter Gold Spice and jockey Doni Prastiyou but managed to get the decision by a head.


Hartley shows good promise

   Hartley, a three-year-old bred by Pourerere’s Sue Harty and close friend Christine McKay, looks to have a bright future on the racetrack following his game win in a 1300m maiden race at Otaki last week.

   The big gelding is a son of the ill-fated sire Azamour out of the Towkay mare Madam Butterfly and is now owned by Woodville trainer Neil Connors and his wife.

   Hartley was having only his second start, his first resulting in a fourth over 1100m on his home track in August last year. He suggested he was ready for a big fresh up performance when winning a 1000m Foxton trial on December 12.

   Top apprentice Sam Weatherley was aboard the horse at Otaki and had him trailing the leader until the home turn before taking control early in the home straight. The horse kept up a strong gallop to win by three-quarters of a length.

   Hartley was sold for $23,000 as a weanling and his dam Madam Butterfly was the winner of five races. She has produced a colt foal this year by Sweynesse.


Top jockey at Hastings

   Australian woman jockey Katelyn Mallyon will be in action at next Monday’s Hawke’s Bay New Year’s Day race meeting at Hastings.

   The successful hoop will ride the Hastings-trained Savvy Dreams in the Rating 75 race over 1200m and has also been booked for mounts from the powerful Te Akau stable of Stephen Autridge and Jamie Richards as well as those prepared by Steven Ramsay and Julia Ritchie.

   Mallyon is based in Victoria, where she has recorded several group race victories, including last year’s Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes on the Robert Hickmott-trained Assign. She also rode that horse in the 2016 Melbourne Cup.

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