Former top juvenile Ardrossan maintained his unbeaten New Zealand record when he scored in the Gr.3 Preferment@Brighthill Farm Concorde Handicap (1200m) at Ellerslie on the Karaka Sales raceday in January.
Unbeaten in two New Zealand starts as a two-year-old, including a win at Listed level, the Redoute’s Choice entire was subsequently sent to Australia in a bid to enhance his value for a possible future stud career.
Nothing went right for the colt in his four Australian starts and he returned to his original trainer, Stephen Marsh in late 2018.
A comfortable first-up win at Te Aroha earlier in January had Ardrossan primed for his effort today and he didn’t disappoint as he sat outside a solid pace set by Joy Anna before taking control of the race at the 300m.
Carrying the colours of part-owner Waikato Stud, Ardrossan forged clear before comfortably holding out the late challenge of Ever Loyal by a length in a smart 1.10.07 for the 1200m journey.
Marsh was all smiles as he accepted congratulations in the Ellerslie birdcage after the race.
“We think he is really high class. He was up against it today, but he travelled beautifully and won well” Marsh said
The Stephen Marsh trained Crown Prosecutor (Medaglia d’Oro x Riptide) showed a huge heart to claimed New Zealand’s premier 3yo Group 1 race at just his seventh start for his owners JML Bloodstock and Linda & Harvey Green.
The Hesket Bloodstock-bred 3YO colt was a $50,000 buy for Bruce Perry Bloodstock, from the Woodside Stud draft at the Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling sale.
Perry said “Crown Prosecutor was always a lovely athletic horse and he’s now won a Group 1 and a Group 3 from just seven starts.’’
The outstanding looking colt may head to Sydney for the Australian Derby, however he has come a long way in a short space of time and as a consequence his connections may opt to give him a well deserved break before his 4yo season.
The well bred 3yo colt by Medaglia D’Oro, Crown Prosecutor, carried part-owner Lib Petagna’s colours to a special win in the Gr. 3 Lucia Valentina Wellington Stakes at Otaki. In the same JML Bloodstock colours, Lucia Valentina won this race five years ago. Like Crown Prosecutor, she was trained by Stephen Marsh at Cambridge.
In contrast to his fast-finishing placings in his previous two starts, Crown Prosecutor was sent to the lead today by rider Jason Waddell. He dictated terms throughout the 1600-metre feature and still had plenty of petrol in the tank to allow him to hold on for a strong victory.
“It was a great ride to go straight to the front with the blinkers on today,” Marsh’s racing manager Todd Pollard said. “He’s come out and led and has just kept going. He’s a lovely colt, he’s got a great physique.”
BPB bought Crown Prosecutor for A$50,000 at the 2017 Inglis Melbourne yearling sale. Raced by JML Bloodstock in partnership with Harvey Green’s Huntingdale Lodge, the colt has now had four starts for a win, two placings and $42,625 in prize-money. He heads to the paddock for a short break before targeting the Group 1 Levin Stakes at Wellington on 12 January.
Owner Lib Petagna and trainers Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman have scored back-to-back wins in the Gr. 3 Rich Hill Stud Taranaki Breeders’ Stakes at Hawera. They teamed up 12 months ago to win the fillies and mares’ feature with Francaletta, and on Saturday the same colours were carried to an all-the-way win by the 5yo mare Nicoletta.
“That was a really good win in her first start since April,” Forsman told www.theinformant.co.nz. “She’d been working really well heading into it, and we were expecting a strong performance first-up. Once she got the lead and dictated terms, it was set up very nicely for her and she fought them all off really well.”
The Savabeel mare, bred by Goodwood Stud and bought for $90,000 as a yearling by BPB on behalf of JML Bloodstock, has now had 22 starts for four wins, seven placings and more than $232,000 in prize-money.
This was Nicoletta’s second Group 3 win, having beaten the subsequent Group One winners Devise and Bonneval in the Gr. 3 Desert Gold Stakes in early 2017. She had a series of big-race placings last season in the Gr. 1 Herbie Dyke Stakes, Gr. 1 New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes and Gr. 2 Travis Stakes.
With the 2018-19 season well underway, the BPB managed race team include a number of horses that are worth following, including:
Nicoletta (5yo mare Savabeel / Celtic Crown) Trained by M Baker/A Forsman. Already a Gr3 winner and Gr1 placed, Nicoletta has really developed since she was last seen out. Her work has been excellent and she is due to make her seasonal debut at Hastings in the Gr3 1400m on Oct 6.
Peaceful (3yo filly Savabeel / Paloma) Trained by M Baker/A Forsman. The winner of a Listed 3yo fillies race when kicking off her season at Wanganui, Peaceful is now in Melbourne and due to run in Sunday’s Gr2 1000 Guineas Prelude as a leadup to the 1000 Guineas.
Santa Catarina (3yo filly Savabeel / Discreet Evening) Trained by Stephen Marsh. A stakeswinner at two NZ, Peaceful is in the middle of a two race campaign in Sydney. She runs in Saturday’s Gr1 Flight Stakes and while it is a huge task taking on the quality Australian fillies at this time of year, the trip should be the making of her. Providing she comes through the race well, she will have a short break before a possible tilt at the NZ 1000 Guineas on 17 November.
Zaniah (3yo filly Zoustar / Listen Here) Trained by Stephen Marsh. A tall filly who was given 2 starts at 2 for a 4th and a 5th. She has taken awhile to strengthen but if her trial at Te Teko on 25 September is anything to go by, she will be in for an exciting season. She has shown well above average ability from day one but just needed time.
Evalina (3yo filly I Am Invincible / Tahnee Topaz) Trained by Kris Lees. Second at her only 2yo start, Evalina was a most impressive maiden winner at Wyong on 23 September. She is likely to have just the one more run this time up to be allowed more time to develop but she is held in high regard by Kris.
Gundown (4yo gelding by High Chaparral) Trained by M Baker/A Forsman, Gundown made his season debut at Matamata (26 September) when running second with the top weight of 61kgs. Group placed twice at 3, he has the makings of a very good stayer.
Wellington owner Lib Petagna, who races under the JML Bloodstock banner, was voted NZ Owner of the Year for the third successive year at the recent New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing annual awards for the 2017-18 season. Lib was a shareholder in 25 runners in New Zealand and almost a third were either black type winners or group-placed. His racing team included the blacktype performers Francaletta, Nicoletta, Maygrove, Sofia Rosa, Gundown, Marcellina and Peaceful who were all selected and managed by BPB.