Filly of the Year Bonneval (NZ) reigns supreme in New Zealand Oaks

After only collecting her first points in late January, Bonneval (NZ) (Makfi) was crowned the 2016-17 New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year when she won the $300,000 Group 1 Wellfield New Zealand Oaks (2400m) at Trentham on Saturday.

The Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman-trained filly began her rise with a placing in the Group 3 Desert Gold Stakes (1600m) at Trentham in late January. Since then she has put together successive victories in the Group 2 Sir Tristram Fillies’ Classic (2000m) at Trentham, the Group 3 Lowland Stakes (2100m) at Hastings and a crowning glory in Saturday’s New Zealand Oaks.

Ridden by Matt Cameron, Bonneval got a long way back early and had just three horses behind her in a strung-out 16-horse field as they turned into the back of the track.

The hot favourite began to advance as the pace eased down the back of the track, and Cameron decided at about the 600-metre mark that it was time to go. The $2.80 favourite swooped around the outside and surged to the lead.

Bonneval faced formidable resistance in the straight from Devise (NZ) (Darci Brahma), and the two fought a stirring battle down the straight before Bonneval edged away to win by half a length.

“She’s a beautiful filly,” Forsman said. “She was a standout when Murray and the guys bought her at the sales and she’s gone on with it.

“She got a long way back today but they were going quick enough early on. Matt got her rolling and rode her like the best filly in the race.

“She doesn’t necessarily need to do any more this preparation, we’ll just get her home and see how she is. She’s only going to get better as an older mare.”

Bred by City Bloodstock, Bonneval was purchased by Baker Racing for $150,000 at the 2015 Premier Sale. She is a full-sister to the Group winner Imposing Lass (NZ) (Makfi) and a half-sister to the Group winners Full Of Spirit (Flying Spur) and Lady Cumquat (Duke Of Marmalade).

Raced by Terry Jarvis, Alister Lawrence and John Rattray, Bonneval has now had seven starts for four wins, one placing and $301,500 in prize-money.

Bonneval earned another 12 Filly of the Year Series points for Saturday’s Oaks win, finishing with an imposing tally of 27.5 points. Volpe Veloce (Foxwedge) finishes second with 14, just ahead of the Oaks runner-up Devise with 13.5.

In other news Select Sale graduate Rock On (NZ) (Road To Rock) put himself on the road towards some of New Zealand’s biggest staying races with an impressive victory in Saturday’s $50,000 Listed Lincoln Farms New Zealand St Leger (2500m) at Trentham.

The gelding’s trainer Gary Vile won the same race last year with Jacksstar (NZ) (Zed), who went on to win the Group 3 Manawatu Cup and place in the Group 1 Auckland Cup, Group 3 Wellington Cup and Listed Marton Cup.

“We’d like to follow a similar path with this horse as we did with Jacksstar,” Vile said. “We’ll probably go to the Hawke’s Bay Cup next.”

Rock On, who cost just $70,000 when Wellfield Lodge sent him through the Karaka sale ring in the 2014 Select Sale, showcased his staying credentials in his impressive St Leger performance.

Ridden by Jonathan Riddell, he came from towards the back of the15-horse field, switching back to the inside after failing to secure a run towards the outside of the track. He burst through near the running rail and raced to victory by three-quarters of a length.

“He came up against a good field here today and he really showed his worth,” Vile said.

Rock On was bred by Wellfield director Bill Gleeson in partnership with Tanya Goss and is out of the Group 3-winning mare St Jessie (Jetball). Rock On is raced by Gleeson, Vile, R Drummond, AC Macdonald and AJ Vincent.

Rock On has now had 20 starts for four wins, six placings and almost $90,000 in stakes.

A share in Rock On’s sire Road To Rock is also for sale on with the current bid sitting at $1600.

Vendor Wellfield Lodge
Purchaser Regal Farm Partnership (Hamilton)
Breeding Road To Rock – St Jessie
Sale Lot 832, 2014 Select Sale, $70,000

With the 2017 New Zealand Bloodstock South Island Sale just around the corner, one of the greatest bargain buys in the Sale’s history hit the headlines again on Saturday when Signify (NZ) (Perfectly Ready) won the $50,000 Listed Phill Cataldo Bloodstock Lightning Handicap (1200m) at Trentham.

Bought at the 2013 Sale for just $5,500, Signify rose to stardom with an outstanding win in the $250,000 Group 1 JR & Berkett Telegraph (1200m) at Trentham in January.

Over the same course and distance, the five-year-old did it again on Saturday with an irresistible come-from-behind run. Jockey Chris Johnson positioned him at the rear of the 10-horse field, then timed his finish to perfection and brought him home over the top of his rivals to win by a length.

Signify has now won nine of his 33 starts and more than $330,000 in stakes – 60 times his purchase price.

“He loves it here at Trentham, it’s the ideal place for him,” said trainer Alex ‘Snooky’ Cowan, whose wife Tracey owns the five-year-old. “He really likes the big roomy tracks.

“He’s been tripped up in his last couple by races not quite being run at a true speed and consistent pace, and he’s started over-racing. Mid-race today I wasn’t sure if they were going quick enough for him, but luckily it worked out.”

Signify was bred by the Hawkins family’s Llanhennock Trust, and he is out of the Stravinsky mare Pica Pica (NZ). The Hawkinses offered Signify at the South Island Sale under their Wentwood Grange banner.

The 2017 South Island Sale will be held on 21 April at the Riding for the Disabled Building at the Canterbury Agricultural Park in Christchurch. The catalogue is available now.

Vendor Wentwood Grange
Purchaser Mr AM & Mrs TL Cowan (Ashburton)
Breeding Perfectly Ready – Pica Pica
Sale Lot 32, 2013 South Island Sale of 2YOs & Mixed Bloodstock, $5,500

Lightly raced four-year-old Consommateur (NZ) (Roc de Cambes) tackled stakes company for the first time in Saturday’s A$150,000 Group 3 Bradford Black Epona Stakes (1900m) at Rosehill, and she came out a winner.

Bought from The Oaks Stud’s draft at the 2014 Select Sale for $30,000, Consommateur came from off the pace in the fillies and mares’ feature and powered through the wet ground to win by two and three-quarter lengths.

The win was Consommateur’s third from six career starts, and she has placed in all of the other three. Her prize-money earnings now stand at A$128,600.

“Her whole aim this preparation was this race,” trainer Mick Kent said. “She is owned up here by a good client of mine, Geoff Evers. We bought her in New Zealand.

“She is out of a Zabeel mare. She has taken her time and is a very big mare. She will be better next year.”

Consommateur was bred by The Oaks Stud and is a half-sister to the stakes placegetter Single Act (NZ) (Bachelor Duke).

Offered by The Oaks stud at the 2014 Select Sale, Consommateur was bought by NZB as agent for $30,000.

Vendor The Oaks Stud
Purchaser NZB as agent (Christchurch)
Breeding Roc de Cambes – Consumer
Sale Lot 1012, 2014 Select Sale, $30,000