Heroic Valour looked ready for a bold effort in the big sprint at Te Rapa on the weekend when he worked impressively at Matamata this morning.
Galloping 22 metres out on a dead course proper, Heroic Valour (Lammas) and Chambord (McNab) strode into their work to cover 1000m in 1:08.8 and finished off with a final 600m in 39.6. Heroic Valour goes into Saturday’s Gr. 1 BDC Sprint after good efforts in the Railway and Telegraph, with his latest work showing that he has trained on well for the step up to 1400 metres.
Wildflower (Handley) gave further encouragement for a start in Saturday’s Gr. 1 Herbie Dyke Stakes when she and Four Degrees (Hashazumi) cut out the last 1200m of their work in 1:24.2, 1:09 and 39.9. Wildflower was a luckless fourth in last week’s City of Auckland Cup but there’s no doubting her current well-being.
Swing Note (Miller) caught the eye as she got through impressive solo work ahead of her Sunday engagement at Pukekohe, cutting out 1200m in 1:22.7, 1:07.1 and 38.9. Another for Pukekohe, Pinot Grey (McNab), and Te Rapa entry Our Abbadean (McNab) were paired in solid work over 1200m in 1:18.5, 1:04.5 and 37.9.
Precision Miss (Coleman) was unextended over 1000m in 1:10 and 40.5, while Divine Duke (Bayliss) and Slow Hands (Yanagida) were timed over the same ground in 1:06.4, with fog allowing only an 800-metre split in 51.2.
Cote d’Or (D Weatherley) was allowed to stretch out over the last 800m of her work in 53.1 and 39.2. She looks bright after a let-up and may start on her home track on Matamata Breeders’ Stakes day. Pukekohe entries Lewis Road (Hashazumi) and Divine Elite (Handley) worked over ground but could be timed only over 1200m in 1:19.3.
Fog also prevented any timing of a number of significant gallops. Among these were the Australian-bound Te Akau pair of Embellish and Melody Belle, who both looked bright and happy in their solo work on the course proper. Embellish is scheduled to have his first start in Melbourne on Saturday week, while Melody Belle runs the same day in Sydney.
Te Rapa two-year-old candidates Autumn Wild and Patch Man appeared to be working well as they emerged from the fog, while En Soie and Gold Spice also looked tidy over the final stages of their work in preparation for Pukekohe.