Big team shines at trials
After a quieter period over the last few weeks, a big team at Wednesday's Rangiora trials indicated that is all about to change. It was great to see some old faces back and getting ready to race, including Franco Cristiano (in picture) as well as the new crop of stars.
There were a number of two year olds that stood out on the day with Above N Beyond a stylish winner of his qualifier for the two year old colts and geldings. The second foal out of the good racemare Kabet - 21 starts - 6 wins, Above N Beyond pleased John with his performance.
"He's a big boy and goes nice," said John.
"We will maybe box on with him a little bit longer for the likes of the Sapling Stakes, but will be guided by him. He will tell me over the next wee while if he's ready to box on or not."
Above N Beyond an impressive winner of his qualifier
A couple of trials later and it was another two colts - Tyron Terranova and Power and Grace, that dead-heated in their qualifier also over the 2000m mobile.
Tyron Terranova is a Sweet Lou gelding out of another nice racemare in Tyron's Falcon Ella. He is bred and owned by the Neumanns.
Power And Grace is a Somebeachsomewhere colt out of Pure Magic an unraced mare. He hails from the same family as the very good racehorse Pure Power. He is bred and owned by the Barlows.
Power And Grace led and set terms while Tyron Terranova trailled. The pair drew clear over the last 100m and could not be split at the line, while another stablemate Wyatt Waller was a further four lengths away in third.
The impressive pair are in just their second preparation.
John described the pair as, "nice horses and well mannered."
The dead-heaters - Power And Grace and Tyron Terranova
It was not just the colts and geldings that were stealing the limelight. A pair of fillies in Spellbound and Tiffany Rose were also very impressive in winning their trials.
Spellbound is already qualified and showed in winning her heat that she may be a force to be reckoned with in the two year old fillies features. Owned by Nigel Armstrong and his various Westview syndicates, Spellbound is an Art Major filly out of Return To Gold, which has already left two winners in Missinmemate and Bettor Be Gold.
The winner of all three of her official trials, Spellbound settled four and five back in the running before being released with her run at the 400m by Ross. She quickly went up to the royally bred pacemaker Sweet On Me on the turn, ran past that runner at the 200m and then held on comfortably but well in the run to the line.
"She's come back a touch better than what she was the previous prep," said John.
"She may have another workout and then all going to plan she will make her debut at Addington on 22 February."
Spellbound continues an impressive run at the trials
Tiffany Rose was also impressive in running a nice second in her heat, behind one of the All Stars runners in Amazing Dream. A Somebeachsomewhere filly out of Christian Watch, she is the fifth foal to race out of that mare - Miss Daisy, Code Black, Jack Pack and Nakuru all previous winners.
Tiffany Rose settled last but gained a drag into it down the back on the back of the winner. She hit the line strongly to be beaten one and a half lengths.
"She goes good and is definitely getting better all the time," said John.
A trio of more experienced runners hit the track later in the day in Henry Hubert, Alta Orlando and Franco Cristiano. John was happy with all three. Alta Orlando and Henry Hubert had a short let-up after cup time, while Franco Cristiano hasn't been seen at the races for nearly two years. He has been in work for around three and a half months and seems sound at present, all fingers crossed.
Henry Hubert won the trial by a head over Alta Orlando in 2.32.4, home in 55.6 and 27.2. Franco Cristiano was a close up 4th.
Sundess Son was also back at the trials. He was a comfortable winner in a slow time.
"He felt good. The half hopples were off. He will go around again next week."
Posted: Sat 02 Feb 2019