Group 1-winning Karaka graduate Volpe Veloce (Foxwedge) secured her seventh black-type victory with a classy performance in Saturday's $100,000 Group 2 Windsor Park Stud Japan NZ International Trophy (1600m) at Tauranga.
Bought for $240,000 at the 2015 Premier Sale, Volpe Veloce had previously won the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1200m), Group 2 Eight Carat Classic (1600m), Group 2 Westbury Classic (1400m), Group 3 Eulogy Stakes (1600m), Listed Karaka 3YO Mile (1600m) and Listed Castletown Stakes (1200m).
The seventh stakes win on Saturday was a dominant performance, producing an explosive finishing burst from well off the pace for a comfortable half-length victory. She was ridden by Michael McNab for Matamata trainers Graham Richardson and Gavin Parker.
“She’s a great chaser and everything panned out this time,” Richardson said. “He (McNab) didn’t panic and to be honest, that’s half the battle as well. It was a good effort and I’m just chuffed for her and all the owners.”
Raced by D and C Adams, H Allender, K Anderson, M Chubb, P Dixon, R Featherstone, G Mackin, G Richardson, K and L Robinson, M Skilling, P Spiers, B Wong and K Woodmass, Volpe Veloce has now had 24 starts for 12 wins, two placings and $639,000 in prize-money – more than two and a half times her purchase price.
Volpe Veloce will now shoot for a second Group 1 victory in the Fiber Fresh New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders' Stakes (1600m) at Te Aroha on April 6.
Vendor Lyndhurst Farm
Purchaser Richardsonracing.co.nz (Matamata)
Breeding Foxwedge – Bardego
Sale Lot 273, 2015 Premier Sale, $240,000
Bred by Mr N Vass
In other news graduates of New Zealand Bloodstock sales dominated the finish of Saturday's $80,000 Group 3 Valachi Downs South Island Thoroughbred Breeders' Stakes (1600m) at Riccarton.
The winner was Residential (NZ) (Pins), who was passed with a $60,000 reserve at the 2015 Premier Sale. She has now earned $253,000 for owners Mark Ritchie, Jason Wardle, Michael Piaggi, Henry and Ron Williamson, Leslie and Ann Seaton, John and David Nixon and Waikato Stud Ltd.
The second placegetter Zabay (NZ) (Stravinsky) was passed at the same Sale with a $100,000 reserve, while third-placed Contessa Vanessa (NZ) (Bullbars) cost $50,000 at the 2016 Select Sale and has now earned $318,341.
Residential was ridden by Robert Hannam on Saturday and led all the way, fighting hard in the straight to hold on by half a length.
“John and Karen have done a wonderful job with her and I’m just as pleased for them as I am for her syndicate of owners to get the win today,” Waikato Stud's Mark Chittick told NZ Racing Desk.
“She’s just a good, tough racemare who always gives her best and I think she deserved that one after being thereabouts all season.
“She comes from a really good family and once again there was old Pins reminding us just what a good stallion he was over his long career at Waikato Stud.”
Residential is now a four-time stakes winner, having previously won the Listed NZB Insurance Stakes (1400m), Dunedin Guineas (1500m) and Southland Guineas (1600m).
Vendor Waikato Stud Ltd
Breeding Pins - Metropolitan
Sale Lot 55, 2015 Premier Sale, Psd (Res $60,000)
Bred by Waikato Stud Ltd
Premier Sale graduate Princess Jenni (NZ) (High Chaparral) scored her first black-type win with a stylish performance in Friday’s A$160,000 Group 3 Alexandra Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley.
Bought for $120,000 as a yearling at Karaka, the talented filly was a six-length maiden winner at Geelong earlier in the season. She stepped up to stakes level last start in the Group 2 Kewney Stakes (1400m), finishing seventh, and on Friday night she took another step up.
Ridden by Damien Oliver, the David Brideoake-trained runner produced a powerful finish from well back in the field for a narrow but authoritative victory.
Princess Jenni has now had four starts for two wins, a placing and A$119,890 in prize-money.
For owner Tony Ottobre and his family, her significance spreads well beyond that.
‘’The good horses we call Jenni after our daughter, who passed away in 2015, and we hope to keep her memory alive by naming the horses after her,” he said.
“This has been an absolute thrill and it gives us something to look forward to because when you lose a child, it’s pretty well devastating.
“Our horses give us hope and they give us comfort as well, so it’s great to see them run and especially when they win a Group race.”
Vendor Phoenix Park
Purchaser Mr A Ottobre / Darren Weir Racing
Breeding High Chaparral – Glitzabeel
Sale Lot 184, 2017 Premier Sale, $120,000
Bred by The Sunlight Trust
Star Karaka graduate Avantage (Fastnet Rock) made a triumphant Australian debut at Rosehill on Saturday, fighting back after being headed to win the A$160,000 Group 3 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m).
Bought for $210,000 at the 2017 Premier Sale by Te Akau principal David Ellis, Avantage was New Zealand’s champion two-year-old last season with victories in the $1 million Karaka Million 2YO (1200m) and in the Group 1 Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m).
She was side-lined by a muscle issue after winning the Group 3 Gold Trail Stakes (1200m) in the spring, but on Saturday she resumed on a high.
Avantage began well and was on the lead throughout the fillies and mares’ feature, but she was clearly headed in the straight by the favourite Resin (Exceed and Excel).
Rider Opie Bosson didn’t panic, however, and Avantage fought her way back level with the Godolphin mare. She edged away in the closing stages, scoring an outstanding victory by three-quarters of a length.
“She’s a lovely little filly and she doesn’t know when to lie down,” Bosson said. “She’s a top-quality filly back home and she has done nothing wrong so far.
“She’s got heaps of improvement. She had such a long time off. This is a bonus win first-up.”
Avantage has now had eight starts for seven wins, one second and more than $820,000 in prize-money for owners the Te Akau Avantage Syndicate.
“I probably didn’t expect her to land in front today, but I thought it was a lovely patient ride by Opie, he never panicked,” trainer Jamie Richards said. “He got headed but she fought back to win well.
“She’s always been a high-class filly and hopefully we can work through to The Championships now with a little bit of confidence that hopefully she can step up.”
Her next target is the A$1 million Group 2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m) at Randwick on April 13.
Vendor The Oaks Stud
Purchaser Mr DC Ellis (Te Akau)
Breeding Fastnet Rock – Asavant
Sale Lot 50, 2017 Premier Sale, $210,000
Bred by Mr W Calder & Mrs K N Calder