Group 2 glory for blue-blooded Lord Arthur

The beautifully bred Lord Arthur (Camelot) took his career to a new level with a spectacular performance in Saturday’s $100,000 Group 2 Valachi Downs Championship Stakes (2100m) at Ellerslie.

Passed in with a $110,000 reserve at Karaka’s 2017 Premier Sale, Lord Arthur is a half-brother to Bonneval (NZ) (Makfi), who was bought for $150,000 at the 2015 Premier Sale and won the Group 1 New Zealand Oaks (2400m), Australian Oaks (2400m) and Underwood Stakes (1800m). She earned more than $1.5 million and was a two-time New Zealand Horse of the Year.

Three other-half sisters, Full Of Spirit (Flying Spur), Lady Cumquat (Duke of Marmalade) and Imposing Lass (NZ) (Makfi), were also stakes winners.

Now Lord Arthur has joined them. The gelding had shown huge promise in his seven previous starts, including an effortless maiden win in January and a solid-finishing sixth in the Group 3 Manawatu Classic (2000m) last start. On Saturday he put everything together.

Ridden by Jake Bayliss, Lord Arthur settled well back in the field behind a strong pace. He stormed home out wide in the straight, sailing past Intrigue (NZ) (Showcasing) and scoring by a length and a half.

“That was very impressive,” co-trainer Murray Baker said. “He’s a half to Bonneval but he has been a little bit immature. We’ve spaced his races and given him plenty of time.

“I gave him a stayer’s show today with plenty of pace on. He showed good acceleration.”

Lord Arthur has now had eight starts for two wins, two placings and $73,850 in prize-money for owner-breeder Peter Newsom and co-owners Tony Wales and Mac Whitehouse.

Vendor Westbury Stud
Breeding Camelot – Imposingly
Sale Lot 207, 2017 Premier Sale, Psd (Res $110,000)
Bred by Mr P Newsom

Karaka graduate The Chosen One (NZ) (Savabeel) is now a stakes winner on both sides of the Tasman, adding a brilliant win in Saturday’s $160,000 Group 3 Cellarbrations Frank Packer Plate (2000m) at Randwick to his two black-type victories in New Zealand.

An unlucky and powerful-finishing fourth in the Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m) in his most recent start, The Chosen One turned his fortunes around in style on Saturday.

Passed in at the 2017 Premier Sale with a $150,000 reserve, the well-bred colt jumped from a wide gate and was kept out of trouble by jockey Blake Shinn, who eased him back to the tail of the field.

He was still last with 750 metres to travel, but then produced a powerful burst around the outside of the field. He took the lead at the 200-metre mark and surged clear to win by a length and a half. The time for the 2000-metre feature was a sizzling 2:00.97.

“It’s a consolation for the Derby,” Shinn said. “I thought his run in the Derby was arguably the best run in the race, and he brought that form here today.

“We made another searching run on him, but we were coming back 400 metres in trip, so I was mindful of that. He did the job nicely, he is a lovely horse.”

The Chosen One previously won the Listed Zacinto Stakes (1600m) at Riccarton in October and the Group 3 Manawatu Classic (2000m) at Awapuni last month, which set up his Sydney autumn campaign.

He has now had 11 starts for four wins, five placings and more than $290,000 in prize-money for a large group of owners that includes his breeders, the South Island’s renowned Dennis brothers.

“He has been up a long time, but he keeps improving,” said Andrew Forsman, who trains in partnership with Murray Baker.

“He’s a quality-bred colt, just maturing at the right time. It was great to see him get his just desserts today.”

The $60,000 Premier Sale purchase Purple Sector (NZ) (Pins) was close up in third in the Frank Packer Plate, lifting his career earnings past A$120,000.

Vendor Phoenix Park
Breeding Savabeel – The Glitzy One
Sale Lot 445, 2017 Premier Sale, Psd (Res $150,000)
Bred by A G, K J, M C & P R Dennis

Quality mare Celebrity Dream (NZ) (Thorn Park), who was a $260,000 yearling purchase at Karaka in 2014, picked up her sixth stakes win with a dominant performance in Friday’s A$100,000 Listed Sheila Gwynne Classic (1400m) at Ascot.

Bought by John Chalmers Bloodstock at the 2014 Premier Sale, Celebrity Dream was recruited to race for the leviathan Western Australian owners Bob and Sandra Peters.

Celebrity Dream has well and truly delivered, winning 11 of her 27 starts and A$618,550 in prize-money.

Friday’s Listed win sits alongside her previous victories in the Group 3 La Trice Classic (1800m) and the Listed Jungle Mist Classic (1200m), Starstruck Classic (1600m) and two editions of the Jungle Dawn Classic (1400m).

Trainer Adam Durrant has indicated that the six-year-old is closing in on retirement to stud, but Friday’s performance showed she had lost none of her zest.

Dropping back to second-last under regular rider William Pike, Celebrity Dream was angled to the outside in the straight and coasted past her rivals. With Pike never asking her for full effort, she scored by a length and a half.

Celebrity Dream was bred by her Karaka vendors Haunui Farm in partnership with Garry Cranny and Frantic Bloodstock.

She is a half-sister to the multiple Group winners Vavasour (NZ) (Redoute’s Choice) and Vilanova (NZ) (Commands). Another half-sister, Rondinella (NZ) (Ocean Park), has been Group 1-placed in this season’s Tancred Stakes (2400m) and New Zealand Stakes (2000m).

Vendor Haunui Farm
Purchaser John Chalmers Bloodstock
Breeding Thorn Park – Valpolicella
Sale Lot 325, 2014 Premier Sale, $260,000
Bred by G J Cranny, Frantic Bloodstock Ltd & Haunui Bloodstock Ltd