News In Brief
Minor setback for The Precious One
A stone bruise has upset plans for the unbeaten filly The Precious One.
Wingatui trainer Claire Anderton had set The Precious One for Saturday’s Inglewood Stud Guineas Trial (1400m) at Riccarton after she extended her unbeaten sequence with her second win at Oamaru last month.
“She’s really bright and was all set to go to Riccarton but she’s got a stone bruise,” Anderton said. “It’s not serious but I just don’t want to take any risks with her.
“There are a couple of options for her. She can run at Ashburton in a couple of weeks.”
The Ashburton event is the Gr.3 $50,000 Barnswood Farm Stakes (1400m) and was won last year by subsequent Gr.1 NZ 1000 Guineas (1600m) winner La Diosa from Heroic Valour and Savile Row, who went on to finish third and second respectively behind Ugo Foscolo in the Gr.1 NZ 2000 Guineas (1600m).
The Precious One, a daughter of Darci Brahma, is still on track in a bid to follow in the footsteps of her dam, The Jewel, at Riccarton next month. She is nominated for the Gr.1 Gavelhouse.com 1000 Guineas, which was won by the Jewel 15 years ago.
The Precious One also holds a nomination for the Gr.1 Al Basti Equiworld 2000 Guineas on the first day of the NZ Cup Carnival next month.
No hurry with Seventh Up
While focusing on current stable star Close Up, Cambridge trainer Shelley Hale has his brother, Group Two winner Seventh Up, quietly ticking over in the background.
Seventh Up has been off the scene since finishing a close second at Te Rapa last May, one outing after his claim to fame when winning the Gr.2 Manco Easter Stakes (1600m) at Ellerslie.
“He’s been back in work for a while and I’m just taking him along quietly,” Hale said. “I was thinking of running him here in the trials but they were called off. There’s no pressure as the autumn is what we’re really looking at.
“I’ll find somewhere to slot him in. Maybe he could get to Rotorua for the weight-for-age sprint. Later on there’s the Rich Hill Mile then the Thorndon Mile, but we’ll just take it quietly and see how he comes up.”
Hale is pleased with Close Up going into Saturday’s Gr.1 Livamol Classic (2040m).
“Touch wood, everything is going as good as it was before the first two races at Hastings,” Hale said, referring to the Gr.1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m) and Gr.1 Windsor Park Plate (1600m) in which Close Up ran first and second respectively.
Prom Queen on track for Ashburton
The fleet-footed Prom Queen is on track to head south for the Gr.3 $50,000 Barnswood Farm Stakes at Ashburton on October 21.
The daughter of Super Easy will be chasing her sixth win in succession and her eighth from nine starts when she tackles the 1400-metre feature which is building up to be a thrilling contest.
As part of her preparation before her trip south, Prom Queen did an exhibition gallop with a new stablemate Sharp Proposition (Sam Collett) between races on her home track on Wednesday and hit out nicely without being pressured by rider Alysha Collett.
“She doesn’t gallop the best so it was pretty good for her,” Collett said. “She had a bit of a blow afterward so she’ll be improved by it. It’s going to be a very strong field at Ashburton.”
Prom Queen has won her last five races by a total of 25 lengths and that winning streak includes two stakes races, the Listed Berkley Stud Champagne Stakes (1200m) at Riccarton by five and a quarter lengths and the Gr.3 Tavistock Northland Breeders’ Stakes (1200m) at Ruakaka last start by two and a half lengths.
In her latest start she defeated the Tony Pike-trained stablemates Aim Smart and Felton Road who are both leading candidates for the Gr.2 Sacred Falls Hawke’s Bay Guineas (1400m) at Hastings on Saturday.