News In Brief
Back to basics for Savile Row
It’s a case of back to the drawing board for multiple Group One-placed entire Savile Row after the son of Makfi finished towards the tail of the field in last Saturday’s Gr.1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Randwick.
Raced by Kevin Hickman of Valachi Downs, Savile Row has failed to fire in two starts from the Flemington stable of Mike Moroney, having previously performed well for Moroney and training partner Pam Gerard in New Zealand.
“It was a little bit disappointing,” said Jonathan Scully, who manages Valachi Downs.
“He was pulling too hard up on the pace and we didn’t really think that was where he was going to be. Then he was a bit like a drunken sailor in the straight.
“We’ll go back to basics and reassess where we go. Mike will probably take the side winkers off and get a set of blinkers on him. We may step back in grade to get a bit of confidence back in the horse and back in ourselves.
“Everyone that has ridden him has said he’s a serious horse but he’s got to get his ringcraft right.”
Irish Cream to follow blueprint
The connections of Irish Cream are planning to follow the same path as Group One-winning stablemate Melody Belle to the Karaka Million.
The daughter of O’Reilly will make her debut in the Tavistock Owners Syndicate 2YO at Ruakaka on Wednesday and rates a big chance after a trials win at Te Teko recently.
“She’s a lovely filly who has done everything right,” co-trainer Jamie Richards said. “Obviously it’s only eight days after the trial, which is not ideal, but it’s a chance of a trip away. Hopefully she’ll jump and put herself in the race.
“This is the same race Melody Belle won first-up last year and we plan to follow a similar path to the Karaka Million if we think she is up to it.”
Melody Belle went on to finish third in the Gr.2 Wakefield Challenge Stakes (1100m), then was unplaced at Ellerslie in a lead-up to the Karaka Million before winning the big one in convincing fashion. She then went on to win the Gr.1 Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) and the Gr.2 QTC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m).
A $210,000 purchase at Karaka by David Ellis, Irish Cream is from a three-time winning Zabeel mare Zantelagh and her second dam is the Gr.1 VATC Oakleigh Plate winner Dantelah.
ARC announces stake increases
The Auckland Racing Club has announced a range of stake increases for the 2017/18 racing season.
On the ARC’s six feature racedays held between December 2017 and February 2018 (excluding the twilight meeting on December 13) Rating 65, 75 and 85 races will be run for an additional $5000 above the minimum stake, Rating 65 stakes will be $27,500 (minimum stake $22,500), while Rating 75 stakes will be $30,000 (minimum $25,000) and Rating 85 stakes will be $35,000 (minimum $30,000).
To ensure there is a differential between Rating 85 and Open races on a feature raceday, Open races will be run for $40,000.
The final of the Dunstan Feeds Stayers Championship Final on New Year’s Day will be run for a stake of $100,000, an increase of $20,000 from the 2016/17 season. All Dunstan Feeds Stayers Championship Qualifiers will be run for $5000 above the minimum stake.
The Listed Mufhasa Stakes (3yo, 1300m, SWP) to be held on Vodafone Derby Day (Saturday March 3) will be for a stake of $60,000, an increase of $10,000 from last season.