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Hastings stable enjoys great time on the Coast 2 Mar 2018

   It is amazing what a week away and a change of environment can do to racehorses and this was evidenced by the results the Hastings training partnership of Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen achieved on East Coast racetracks last week.

   The Lowry/Cullen stable sent a team of horses north for the Poverty Bay meeting at Gisborne on February 18 and the two day Wairoa meeting on February 22 and February 25 and picked up stakemoney from two wins, two seconds, two fourths and three fifths over the three days of racing.

   Cullen and his partner Nikki Lourie took the initial float load up to Gisborne but then based themselves on course at Wairoa for the remainder of the stay. Lowry then took another team up for the first day of the Wairoa meeting and brought some of the Gisborne runners home. He also took the stable’s probationary apprentice Hunter Durrant up so that he could stay and ride those based at Wairoa in trackwork leading up to the second day.

   The results the stable achieved seemed to get better as the week went on. After a fourth by Real Beach and fifths by Saint Kitt and Tuigold at Gisborne they then produced Silhouette Beauty to finish fourth and Pakapunch fifth on the first day at Wairoa.

   The stable then hit their straps on the second day at Wairoa when Wait A Sec and Saint Kitt took out the quinella in the $30,000 Affco NZ Wairoa Cup and Tuigold won a $10,000 maiden race over 1450m.

   The Lowry/Cullen stable went desperately close to snaring a third win on the day with Real Beach only going down by a short head when second in a $10,000 Rating 65 race over 2100m.

   “The whole week was a great team effort,” Guy Lowry said this week.

   “To have the horses stabled on course up there at Wairoa was great for them and they seemed to thrive on it.”

   Wait A Sec, winner of the Group 1 Livamol Classic at Hastings in October, is one horse that seemed right at home in the peaceful surroundings of the Wairoa racecourse.

   The Postponed seven-year-old was coming off a last start eighth in the Group 1 Herbie Dyke Stakes (2000m) at Te Rapa on February 10, where he was unsuited by a very wet track. He worked strongly in an exhibition gallop between races on the first day of the Wairoa meeting and then produced a herculean performance to get up and snatch a last stride win in the cup on the second day, when carrying 61kg.

   “We wanted to give him (Wait A Sec) another run before the Auckland Cup but we really didn’t think he could win on that track, carrying that weight,” Lowry said.

   “It just shows what class can do.”

   Wait A Sec was slow out of the gates in the Wairoa Cup but rider Johnathan Parkes was able to get the horse up into a midfield position going down the back straight. He then sent him forward from about the 600m peg to have him with striking distance of the leaders on the home turn.

  His stablemate Saint Kitt had swept to the lead rounding the home turn and looked set to give jockey Tony Allan his 1000th New Zealand winner when two lengths clear inside the last 200 metres. But then Wait A Sec started to really dig in and he gathered the leader in stride by stride to nose him out right on the line.

   Saint Kitt was game in defeat and showed his first glimpse of form since he finished first and second in two starts at Riccarton in the autumn of last year.

   Lowry said the Keeper eight-year-old had been struggling with his breathing in recent races and the addition of a tongue-tie helped him breathe better.

   It was Wait A Sec’s 13th career victory with eight of those wins coming from his last 12 starts. He will now head to the Group 1 $500,000 Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup (3200m) tomorrow week where he is listed as a $12 chance on the TAB Fixed Odds market.

   Savvy Dreams, another from the Lowry/Cullen stable, will accompany Wait A Sec on the trip north where she will contest the Group 1 $200,000 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes (2000m).

   The Savabeel mare turned in a creditable performance for seventh in last Saturday’s Group 1 Haunui Weight-for-age Classic (1600m) at Hastings, when unsuited by the 1600m distance and the overall pace of the race.

   Jockey Masa Tanaka did a great job to get the mare across from a wide draw to settle midfield in the early stages but then got shuffled back when the pace slackened.

   Savvy Dreams was then left flat-footed when the pace quickened again coming to the home bend but she was steadily making ground over the final stages and recorded the equal third fastest last 600m time in the race.

   Guy Lowry said the 2000m distance of next week’s Ellerslie feature will suit the mare much better but he added that, if the track became rain affected, she would be scratched and turned out for a spell.

   “Whatever happens this will be her last run this campaign and she can then have a break.

   “I think the best will be seen of her next year when she is a five-year-old,” he added. 


Cheers for Tuigold

   The Hawke’s Bay owners of Tuigold had good reason to celebrate after the three-year-old won at odds of seven to one at Wairoa last Sunday.

   The Any Suggestion three-year-old was having only his sixth start and was at remarkably good odds considering he had chalked up a second, a third and a fifth from five previous runs. He had needed the run when a close fifth over 1400m at Gisborne a week before, in his first race for a month.

   The country’s leading jockey Samantha Collett bounced Tuigold away quickly in the 1450m event and got him into a perfect trailing position. She then angled him away from the fence to lodge a challenge rounding the home turn and the horse showed great determination over the final stages to stretch his neck out and score by a long head.

   Tuigold is prepared by the Hastings partnership of Guy Lowry and Grant Cullen. He is raced by his Havelock North co-breeder John Best in partnership with Clive-based Steve Wyman and Dave Lumsden (Taradale).

   Best and Dave Lumsden’s brother Bruce bred the horse out of the Kaaptive Edition mare Miss Tui, who recorded four wins, three seconds and three thirds from 26 starts.


Close to a double

   Napier racehorse owner Paddy Murphy came close to picking up two wins in the space of 24 hours last week.

   Murphy has a racing share in Petite Midas, who broke through for a deserved maiden win at Riccarton last Friday and he is also a part-owner in Ballybay, who only went down by a neck when second in a $30,000 Rating 85 race over 1200m at Hastings on Saturday.

   Petite Midas had recorded four seconds and a third from her previous 21 starts, when prepared by Awapuni trainer Lisa Latta. It was decided to transfer the mare to a South Island stable, where the competition is slightly weaker, and she was having her second start for Riccarton-based Andrew Carston.

   Apprentice Rafi Firdaus claimed a 2kg allowance aboard the mare last Friday and positioned her midfield in the early stages before setting out after the leaders starting the last 300 metres. She gradually wore down the favourite Miss Brahmos and got up on the line to win by half a head.

   Petite Midas is an Australian-bred five-year-old, by Congrats out of the Flying Spur mare Miss Midas.


Weather to decide next start                                                                                                

   The weather will have the final say on the immediate future of Devise, game winner of last Saturday’s Group 1 Haunui Farm Weight-for-age Classic (1600m) at Hastings.

   “There are two options for her,” trainer Shaune Ritchie said.

   “She still holds a nomination for the Australian Cup at Flemington and that is on the same day as the Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes at Ellerslie,” he added.

   “Her training regime will be exactly the same wherever we go. The worry is a wet track at Ellerslie and Flemington dries extremely well so we would have no concerns there.

   “She’s already climbed the biggest mountain here with that Group 1 win so it would be interesting to see where she sits over in Australia, she’s got a bit of form around Bonneval.

   Devise had finished runner-up to Bonneval in last season’s New Zealand Oaks (2400m) in her only previous Group 1 outing before breaking through last Saturday.


Werther now sidelined

   Former New Zealand-trained galloper Werther will be sidelined for the mandatory three months after bleeding from both nostrils when finishing runner-up to Time Warp in last Sunday’s Group 1Hong Kong Gold Cup (2000m).

   “It’s a shame because he had already headed Time Warp and Hugh thought, when he really went for him, that Werther would give him at least another half a length,” trainer John Moore said.

   “We’ll get him back again, but there won’t be races for him at that stage of this season.”

   A son of Tavistock, Werther had been on target for next month’s Dubai World Cup meeting where he held entries for the Group 1 Dubai Sheema Classic (2410m) and the Group 1 Dubai Turf (1800m).

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