Eletist and Roseana’s Spirit looked well on target for weekend racing when they galloped soundly at Matamata this morning.
Galloping right-handed on the outside of a slow course proper, Eletist (Lammas) and Roseana’s Spirit (A Jones) strode over 1200m in 1:22.8, with their last 600m in 38.9 and final 200 in 12.6. Eletist, a dual nominee for Ellerslie on Saturday, has made good progress for trainer Glenn Old since his last-start win, while Roseana’s Spirit could be an improver in her Friday engagement at Te Awamutu.
Persuasive (Coleman) and Secret Spirit (C Grylls) cantered away from the winning post before quickening the tempo, with the full 1200m taking 1:28.9, last 600m in 38.8 and 200m in 12.6. The Wexford pair were first and second at Ellerslie last week and will be rivals there again this weekend. Te Awamutu entry Cote d’Or (C Grylls) looked bright in her work, with the last 600m taking 39.2.
Great Northern Steeplechase entry Gargamel was ridden by Wayne Hillis in a searching task over two rounds of the course proper and was timed over the last 1200m in 1:31.2 and 600m in 44.7. The Winton visitor has thrived since his third placing in the Grand National Steeplechase.
On the sand Wanganui-bound pair Our King Sway (Danis) and Hello M’Lady (S McKay) were in good form as they cut out 1000m in 1:04 and the final 600m in an impressive 36.9. Promising maiden pair Dragon Robe (Lammas) and Shellez Ace (S McKay) got through 1000m in 1:05.2 and 38.4, while Ellerslie candidate Sherpa (Tait) ran in from the 800m in 49.2 and 36.8.
Battle Royal (K McQuade) had pace on from the start of 1200m in 1:22, with the last 1000m in 1:07.2 and 600m in 39.6. Dubai Shuffle (Gorham) covered the same distance in 1:22.8, 1:07.7 and 39.8. Cool Runnings (K McQuade) did sound work over 1000m in 1:05 and 37.2.
Only If (N Waddell) was allowed an easy 1000m in 1:13.8 and 43, while in similar work Vinevale (Cameron) took 1:14.2 and 41.2, and Save The Stars (Coleman) 1:12.1 and 40.3.
On the all-weather track Irish Heartbeat (Cole) wasn’t extended over 1000m in 1:08.2 and 36.9. She is entered but not a certain starter at Ellerslie. Cleo Estelle (Gillies) and a Castledale gelding (Cole) were paired over 1000m in 1:06.9 and 36.7.