News In Brief
Guineas start swings on Saturday's performance
Swing Note will attempt to secure a start in next month's Gr.1 gavelhouse.com New Zealand Bloodstock 1000 Guineas (1600m) when she tackles Saturday's Gr.3 Zacinto Stakes (1600m) at Riccarton.
The Encosta de Lago filly pressed her claims for a start in the classic when she cleared maiden grade with a 1 3/4-length win at Riccarton three weeks ago and Jamie Richards is hoping for further improvement.
“She's got to take the next step up. She's up to the mile, which we think will suit, and we're happy with her,” said Richards, who trains in partnership with Stephen Autridge.
“It's a good field on Saturday with Ever Loyal and Scott Base in there, it will give us a good guide for whether we press on to the 1000 Guineas.”
Swing Note opened a joint $7 third favourite with Inanna for the Zacinto Stakes behind Ever Loyal at $2.70 and Scott Base at $4.80.
Meredith gets sister to Tarzino
New Plymouth scrap metal dealer Graham Meredith has welcomed a Tavistock sister to Group One winner and Westbury Stud stallion Tarzino.
Meredith created headlines in 2015 when it was revealed he had paid $1500 for the Zabeel mare Zarzino in foal to Tavistock only months before her son Tarzino won the Gr.1 Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington.
Meredith sold the resulting colt foal for $400,000 at last year's Karaka yearling sales.
Zarzino foaled her Tavistock filly at Waikato Stud and is booked to return to Cambridge Stud sire Tavistock in the coming days.
“We got a filly and she's perfect,” Meredith said. “She was three and-a-half weeks overdue so I was a bit worried, but the foal was up and drinking within half an hour and everything is good with her.”
Meredith has yet to decide whether to retain and race the filly or sell her.
Cambridge 3Y0 returns classic Derby trial
Weather With You pressed his Gr.1 VRC Derby (2500m) claims with victory in his fourth Australian appearance.
The Cambridge-trained three-year-old was fitted with blinkers for Wednesday’s Listed Geelong Classic (2200m) and, after racing on the pace, he was in front on straightening and held a strong gallop to beat Ocean’s Fourteen, a New Zealand-bred son of Ocean Park.
“Obviously the 2500m of the Derby won’t hurt him,” said Andrew Forsman, who trains Weather With You with Murray Baker. “It was the plan when we brought him here to go for the Derby, even though he was still a maiden.
“He came over pretty backward, he had a long, hairy coat. He’s come good the last few weeks.”
Wait proving worthwhile
Patience was rewarded when Vengeur Masque won the Gr.3 Geelong Cup (2400m).
The five-year-old’s success on Wednesday, his first on Australian soil after two in France, has pressed his claims for higher honours.
“We've had a lot of faith in this horse, but he's been a slow maturing horse and he's only just come of age,” trans-Tasman trainer Michael Moroney said.
“He's on his way to this year's Melbourne Cup and next year's as well, but he's just been very slow in strengthening.”
Vengeur Masque was penalised an extra 0.5kg for the Cup, which now places him 37th in order of entry.