Opunake Cup entries Cork, Aromatic and Angelica looked ready for Saturday’s New Plymouth feature when they worked in good style at Matamata on Tuesday morning.
Galloping right-handed on the outside of the course proper, which was just into the heavy range, Cork (Lammas) and Angelica (Kareem) set off from the winning post and gathered momentum as they went. They were timed over the full 1200m distance in 1:24.2, with their final 6000m taking 39.5. It was sound work by the two mares ahead of Saturday’s 1400m feature.
Race rival Aromatic (Durrant) was partnered by Rotorua entry Shoshone (Lammas), working away steadily and recording 39.6 for their final 600m. Aromatic has trained on well from her last-start second in the Rangitikei Gold Cup, while Shoshone got her campaign back on track with a trial win last week after a below-par effort at her most recent start.
Aero De Paris (Pratap) who will be a rival for Shoshone in the main Rotorua sprint, worked as well as ever with a solo final 600m in 38.8, while stablemates and fellow Rotorua runners to also work well inn similar work were Star Treasure (Farr), who recorded 38.9, Te Atatu Pash (Goodwin) 39.2, and Son Of A Butcher (Farr) 39.
So Gorgeous (Yanagida), a possible runner in the Opunake Cup, was paired with Aurora Dolce (C Grylls), clocking 40.2 for their final 600m. Toffee (Lammas) and Diamond Heist (Sanson) strode over 1200m in 1:30.2, quickening over their last 600m in 40.3.
Classy rising four-year-old La Crique (Turner) looked bright in the early stages of her new preparation when allowed to quicken over the final 600m of her work in 42.8.
On the No. 2 sand Teen Titan (Loon) was in good form ahead of his Rotorua engagement when cutting out the last 1000m of his work in 1:03.2 and 600m in 36.4.
Alpino (C Grylls) and Petrachor (Lammas) were also impressive as they cut out 1000m in 1:02.8 and 36.2, while in-form Rotorua runner Apache Boy (M Brosnan) ran the same trip in 1:03.8 and 36.8.
Quartz Queen (M Brosnan) and Fly My Wey (Boyack) covered 1000m in 1:06.8 and 38, while Hanalei (Prastiyou) and fellow Paul Richards-trained filly Bellano (Kahul) were unextended over 800m in 56.5 and 40.4.