Thunder underlined his Ellerslie weekend prospects with a sound gallop at Matamata on Tuesday morning.
Working on the No. 1 sand, Thunder (P Turner) wasn’t after time but still impressed as he cut out his last 1000m in 1:05.4 and final 600m in 39.6. The Bob Autridge-trained gelding followed a fresh-up win with a meritorious fifth after a tough run and looks primed for another big effort at Ellerslie on Saturday.
Another Ellerslie entry to catch the eye on the No. 1 sand was Shoshone, who had raceday rider Sam Collett in the saddle as she strode over 1000m in 1:05.2 and 37.4. She appears to have thrived since her bold first-up effort. Last-start winner Uncle Terry (Leighton) prepared for Ellerslie with 800m in 51.2 and 38.
On the course proper, where the going was in the upper end of dead with the markers set at 26 metres, Burgundy Rose (T Harris) caught the eye ahead of her Ellerslie engagement as she cut out the last 800m of her work in 50.4 and 36.8.
In similar work, Ellerslie entry Princess Rihana (Kumagai) completed her 800m hitout in 50.2 and 36.7, while Aero de Paris (C Grylls) returned 51.5 and 38.3.
Chancellor (Magee), who runs in Saturday’s Futurity Stakes at Ellerslie, went with Rebel Riot (Sanson) over 1000m in 1:09.6, quickening for a final 600m in 39.2. Queen Constantine (C Grylls) went solo over 1000m in 1:06.8 and 39.6.
Le Sablier (Leighton) and Divine Duke (Yanagida) worked over ground and were timed from 1200m in 1:27.8, picking up the tempo to complete the last 1000m in 1:08.6 and 600m in 39.5. Also over ground, Maenad (S Singh) and Justastate (Solomon) left 1200m behind in 1:23.8, 1:08.4 and 40.5.
On the No. 2 sand last-start winner Sweet Molly Malone (S Collett) put in good work over 1200m in 1:17.8, 1:02.4 and 37. The Cody Cole-trained mare has trained on well from her home-track win.
Richard of Yorke (T Harris) was allowed an easier task over ground, cutting out his 1200m in 1:25.2, 1:09.8 and 40.8. Magic Cannon (M Brosnan) did similar work to record 1:23.4, 1:08.2 and 39.2.
Nougat (Tynan), who is likely to head to Cambridge next week, finished his work well after 1000m in 1:05.8 and 36.6. Easy M’Lady (Cox) ran 1000m in 1:06.4 and 37.6, while Iffshecan (S Collett) wasn’t extended over the same ground in 1:10 and 40.8, likewise Prophetic (Farr) who took 1:11.3 and 41.6.