Weekend wrap for stable
On what was somewhat of a quieter weekend for the stable racing wise, it was Queen Kenny in the north and Say My Name in the south that provided the two star turns.
The weekend's racing started on Thursday evening at Alexandra Park. Without any doubt it was Queen Kenny that was the star of the show. Coming off a Group Three win at her previous start on the course, Queen Kenny was well back early in the running from her 30m handicap. With the pace a cracker up front she was still well back at the mile peg. However, she slotted into a nice spot three back on the outer for the last 1300m. Pulled four wide by John at the 500m, she showed a real turn of speed to hit the front at the 200m. While she was all out over the last 50m, to hold out an equally fast finisher in Paramount Dream by a half neck, she kicked really well, with stablemate Whitney another good run in 4th.
To add further merit to the run, her time of 3.24.8 was just 0.1 second off the record of 3.24.7, set by champion mare Pride Of Petite, back in 1997. This was the mare's first official start for the stable, after having previously raced out of the Tony Barron stable. Thursday's win was her 9th from 36 starts and takes her to a C7 assessment. The plan is now to take in the feature trots at Alexandra Part later this month, with the Rowe Cup her ultimate goal.
Queen Kenny continues to thrive out of the Robert Dunn Pukekohe stable
A night later and it was Say My Name that continued his comeback after a long time on the sidelines. After a good tough win first up, Say My Name was confidently backed into the shortest of favourites even off his awkward second line draw. Eased out of the early rush for positions, Say My Name was sent forward confidently by John at the 1100m and quickly worked to a parked spot outside second favourite Expressive Victor. He moved outside that pacer as they turned for home, quickly gaining an advantage, eventually running out a convincing winner by one and three quarter lengths in 2.20.7 for the 1950m. The final 800m was run in a smart 55.8, the last 400m in 28.1.
John was stoked with the run. "I was confident going into the race and he did everything I expected him to. He has come through the race super and will go around again this Friday. Safely through that he'll head north for all the big four year old features."
Say My Name continues to take big steps forward as he wins again at Addington Friday
The other big run of the night was from Dalness Xchange in the Group One New Zealand Breeders Stakes. She drew bad, had little luck in the running yet charged home out wide for third at huge odds, four lengths in arrears of the impressive winner, Luisanabelle Midfrew.
Two well supported runners on the night that had littke luck were American Tart and Gotta Go Ya Hu. American Tart started against some nice fillies and mares and had no luck from her wide draw. Forced to go back early, she improved wide down the back the last time. However, her task was too big on the night with a 56 second half being run off the front. She battled to the line beaten over seven lengths. At this stage though the plans are firmly set on the Southland Oaks in a fortnight.
Gotta Go Ya Hu was heavily supported on the tote in his assignment over the 1950m. He was caught wide early and then charged forward to lead from the 1200m. However, he had done a power of work to get to the top and was found wanting when the pressure went on in the straight. Again the circumstances of the race had the biggest bearing on his performance.
Posted: Sun 03 Apr 2016