Leading Windsor Park Plate candidate Gingernuts looked on target for Saturday’s big event when he galloped impressively at Matamata this morning, while rivals Volpe Veloce and Underthemoonlight also shaped well.
Course proper gallops took place right-handed with the markers set at 15 metres and the going heavy. Gingernuts was ridden by raceday jockey Opie Bosson as he worked in company with stablemate Chance To Dance, who was handled by Bosson’s fiancée Emily Murphy as she combined her track riding and Trackside roles.
The pair worked away from the winning post to complete their final 1200m in 1:22.4 and the last 600m in 39.2. Both horses were travelling well at the end of their work, inspiring Bosson to comment that Gingernuts “felt good” in his build-up to the weekend. Chance To Dance, who has been placed in a trial recently, is unlikely to make the cut for the Windsor Park Plate and will run instead in the Listed 1600 at Pukekohe on Sunday.
Volpe Veloce (Coleman) was as usual not chasing time in her solo hitout later in the session, but still pleased with the manner in which she cut out 1200m in 1:26.6 and 40.8. She looks fit and ready for the weekend.
Underthemoonlight (Lammas) galloped on the sand, where she was partnered by Battle Royal (A Jones) in a slick 1200m in 1:15.8, 1000m in 1:02.4 and 600m in 36.4. The work was enough to convince connections to make a late entry for the Windsor Park Plate.
Also on the sand, Princess Rihanna (S Weatherley) hinted at a bold fresh-up run in Saturday’s Gold Trail Stakes when she and Taupo Friday entry Piazza (Ravi) left 1000m behind in 1:02.1 and 36.5. Astor, who takes good form into the Gold Trail, was kept under a tight hold by her weekend rider Leith Innes until the 600-metre mark. When he let her stride she cut out that section in a brilliant 34.9.
Stablemate Snapshot (Dowling) looked bright in his work ahead of Hastings as he covered 1000m in 1:05.9 and 600m in 37.2, while Chares Road (Coleman) prepared for the Karaka Classic at Pukekohe with 1200m in 1:20.2, 1:04.8 and 37.2.
Hastings sprint candidate Watch This Space (S Weatherley) was paired with Pukekohe entry Hello M’Lady (Lammas) in a brilliant 1000m in 1:00.4 and 34.9. Barnaby (Coleman) also put in good work ahead of Hastings with 1000m in 1:02.8 and 36.4.
Hastings entry Amarula (P McKay) and Taupo runner Matuzalem (S McKay) covered 1000m in 1:04.4 and 37, while Arraignment (Dowling) ran the same trip in 1:07.2 and 38.2.
Smart looking juvenile Queen Of The Air (Bosson), who makes her debut at Pukekohe on Sunday, was restricted to striding work over 800m in 1:00.9 and 43.7.
Joe Cargo (S Turner) did strong work over 1200m in 1:17.3, 1:04.1 and 36.8, while Vanilla Moon also had pace on throughout 1000m in 1:02.8 and 36.9. Spree (Innes) looked forward in her work over 800m in 49.6 and 36.5, Chambord (McNab) was well contained over 1000m in 1:11.2 and 38.6, and Kariokka (Coleman) took 1:13.2 and 41.
On the all-weather track Clarify (S McKay) was again untroubled to run good time, cutting out his last 1000m in 1:00.5 and 600m in 35.5. He will take some beating at Hastings on Saturday.
Woodsman also looked the part for Hastings as his trainer Tony Gillies let him stride over the last 1000m of his work 1:04.6 and 37.8, while The Mitigator (S McKay) and Speewah (S Collett) ran 1000m in 1:03.5 and 36.6.
Back on the course proper Taupo entries Princess Kereru (Coleman) and Wandering Eye (Lammas) finished their work off with 600m in 39.3. Late in the session Pukekohe runner Temple Tiger (Fawcett) did well to record 39.4 for his final section, while Aotearower (Wratten) and Cousteau (Bosson) both returned 40 in separate work.
Gold Trail Stakes entries La Mia Stella (Handley) and Short Fuse (Khan) completed their work with a final 600m in 41.
Embraceable You (P Brosnan) prepared for Pukekohe with striding work over 1200m in 1:25.8 and 41.6. Others to do lighter tasks included Irish Moon (Coleman) with a final 600m in 40.1, Beauty Rose (S Weatherley) 39.5, Flying Master (P Turner) and El Cajero (R Jones) 39.2, Kane (S McKay) 40.6, Retort (R Jones) 41, and Sasanof’s Hero (J Collett) and Sarabande (Fawcett) 40.2.