Second take for Madison County

Madison County is on track to run at Rosehill on Saturday, but a question mark hangs over the track condition.

It will be “Take Two’’ for multiple Group One-winning three-year-old Madison County at Rosehill on Saturday when he lines-up in the Gr.2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m).

The Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman-trained gelding was withdrawn from last week’s Gr.1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) after a float incident.

“He basically just rubbed himself in the float and had a bit of an abrasion around his hip area,” Forsman said.

“It just took the skin off.  It was a little bit raw. He was vetted when he got on course and he wasn’t lame, but it was probably moreso not a good look to send the horse out to race.

“He was second favourite so there was a bit of money invested. They couldn’t take the risk to let him start, but he hasn’t missed any work and seems fine so we are all good to go and hopefully he travels sensibly on Saturday.”

Last Saturday’s withdrawal has continued Madison County’s bad spate of luck in recent times.

“Nothing has gone right,” Forsman said. “The pending sale fell over and because of that he missed a run in the Herbie Dyke (Gr.1, 2000m) and missed the run leading into the Randwick (Guineas, 1600m) and now he’s missed the run in the Rosehill Guineas. It certainly hasn’t been plain sailing, but, all that being said, he is very well.”

Madison County is likely to be met by similar wet track conditions to last weekend at Rosehill on Saturday, but Forsman is hoping the track will improve a bit before they jump.

“It was very testing that track last Saturday and hopefully it improves a little bit throughout the week and isn’t such a holding sort of track,” he said.

“I’m a little bit unsure as to how he will handle it, but he has worked up well on wet tracks before.”

The son of Pins has drawn the visitor’s barrier in the 10-horse field, but that doesn’t overly concern Forsman who is expecting a strong showing from his talented galloper.

“It is a bit awkward (the barrier),” Forsman said. “His pattern of racing is to get back and just to find his feet a little bit, but I guess it is only a 10-horse field and it will be interesting to see how the track plays after that racing last Saturday.

“I am picking they will come to the middle of the track pretty quickly anyway so it shouldn’t be too much of a disadvantage.

“The Kiwis are probably the ones to beat and outside of that it drops away. We would be pretty disappointed if he wasn’t running top three. It will just be interesting to see how he runs out the 2000m.”

– NZ Racing Desk

Focus now on Ardrossan

Ardrossan produced an encouraging trial at Warwick Farm last Friday to be on track for a Group Three mission on Saturday.

Stephen Marsh’s focus on the rich Sydney Autumn Carnival will now switch to a feature sprint after having no joy last weekend with his staying three-year-olds.

The Cambridge trainer is hoping to have better luck with Ardrossan in the Gr.3 Star Kingdom Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on Saturday after Crown Prosecutor and Vernanme both failed to threaten in the Gr.1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m).

Crown Prosecutor, a son of Medaglia D’Oro, was unable to reproduce the form that saw him score a major upset win in the Gr.1 Vodafone New Zealand Derby (2400m) and finished ninth, while Vernanme (by O’Reilly) wound up second-last of the 12 runners.

Marsh has pulled the pin on a tilt at the Gr.1 Australian Derby (2400m) at Randwick on April 6 with both talented three-year-olds.

“They’re both coming home for a spell,’’ Marsh said. “They’ll have a good break and we’ll look at spring racing for them.

“In Crown Prosecutor’s case, you’ll not see a lot of him in New Zealand next season as he’ll go over to Australia early in his next campaign.

“He’s done a good job and we had a crack in Sydney, but he’s ready for a spell now, while Vernanme is a horse with a future, too. He’s growing a bit and he’ll end up a good horse.’’

While in Sydney, Marsh was able to cast his eye over Ardrossan, who missed a planned first-up run in the Gr.1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Randwick after recording an elevated temperature upon on arrival from New Zealand.

The son of Redoute’s Choice showed he was back on track when second in an open 801m trial at Warwick Farm last Friday.

‘’He got crook on the way over and he missed a bit of work after that,’’ Marsh said.

‘’He’s a good-doing bugger and he needed a hit-out so we ran him in the trial last Friday. James (McDonald) rode him and he was happy with the way he felt and ran.

‘’This race on Saturday will tighten him up again and there’s the Queensland carnival just around the corner so we could look at that. But we’ll get through Saturday first before making any plans.

‘’He wants a good track to show his best and that’s a bit of a worry the way the weather has been in Sydney lately.’’

Ardrossan left New Zealand as a winner of the Gr.3 Concorde Handicap (1200m) at Ellerslie and a last-start third behind Melody Belle in the Gr.1 BCD Group Sprint (1400m) at Te Rapa.

While Ardrossan will be chasing Gr.3 honours in Sydney on Saturday, stablemate Glinda Goodwitch is likely to represent Marsh in the Gr.1 Courtesy Ford Manawatu Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) at Awapuni the same day.

The Per Incanto filly has been placed in two of her three starts and between times finished seventh in her first black type assignment, the Gr.2 Matamata Breeders Stakes (1200m).

“She’s made it into the Sires’ field so we’re probably going to have a go,’’ Marsh said.

‘’She ran second to Equinox (who won again last start) first-up and was a good second last time. The only time she missed was when she struck a wet track in the Breeders Stakes. She desperately needs a good track.’’

Marsh plans to also have two starters, Decadence and Deels Done, in another of the Awapuni features, the  Gr.3 Higgins Concrete Manawatu Classic (2000m).

Decadence, a Sweet Orange filly, capped some useful form with a last-start win over 1600m at Te Aroha, while Deels Done, a three-year-old gelding by Dundeel, won two starts ago at Pukekohe over 1600m.

Group Three mission likely for Artiste

Artriste (Taiki Yanagida) producing a courageous win at Tauranga yesterday.

Cambridge mare Artiste has landed herself a black-type challenge for her next assignment after a convincing victory in the Drymix Cement Bay Of Plenty Cup (2100m) at Tauranga yesterday.

The Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman-trained five-year-old has come of age during her current campaign with the victory being her fourth in her last seven starts and sixth in her career.

Capably handled by apprentice Taiki Yanagida, the Mastercraftsman mare tenaciously held out the challenge of race favourite Felaar for the length of the Tauranga straight to score a gritty three-quarter length win.

The win confirmed she is ready to tackle stakes company with Andrew Forsman indicating the Gr.3 LJ Hooker Manawatu Breeders’ (2000m) at Awapuni on April 5 is a likely target.

“That was a really gutsy win that was set up by a perfect ride,” Forsman said.

“I thought he (Yanagida) put her in a great spot throughout and she really benefitted from his claim as she got a good pull in the weights from her main rivals. She has really strengthened up during this campaign and is reaping the benefits of that now.

“While she is going so well we will press on with her. I would think a tilt at some black-type is the obvious choice and the race at Awapuni sets up nicely as it’s against her own sex over a good distance for her.

“She seems to handle most tracks so if we do get the rain then I wouldn’t think it would disadvantage her at all.”

Forsman was also delighted with the run of stablemate True Enough, who finished an unlucky third in the Gr.2 Windsor Park Stud Japan New Zealand International Trophy (1600m).

“He acquitted himself well in his first time against the big guns,” Forsman said. “He didn’t have all the luck in the world as he copped a decent check turning for home, but he picked himself up and ran on very strongly.

“He’s another who has done well this prep so he might go to the spelling paddock now and have a good break before we bring him back in the spring.”

Forsman was philosophical about yesterday’s results for the stable in Sydney where Vin De Dance and Zacada finished well back in the Gr.3 Manion Cup (2400m) while Madison County was a late scratching from the Gr.1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) after suffering a minor injury when being transported to the track.

“Vin De Dance had no luck when he was three-wide throughout so you could excuse that run, whereas, on the face of it, Zacada was quite disappointing,” he said.

“We’ll take a good look at them over the next few days, but at this stage we will press on with them both.

“It was just bad luck with Madison County so now we have to find something for him as his lead-up to the Australian Derby (Gr.1, 2400m).

“The likely option is the Tulloch Stakes (Gr.2, 2000m) next weekend, but we will have to sit down with his owners and discuss it all as they may want to reassess where they want to go with him.

“In some ways it may have been a blessing in disguise to miss the run yesterday as it was a very deep and testing track and I know there will be plenty of his Derby rivals who will be feeling it today.”

NZ Racing Desk



Stablemates primed for Tauranga feature

Nicoletta, pictured winning the Rich Hill Stud Taranaki Breeders’ Stakes at Hawera, is part of the Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman attack on Tauranga’s feature.

Cambridge trainers Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman will head into the Gr.2 Windsor Park Stud Japan NZ International Trophy (1600m) at Tauranga tomorrow armed with three strong chances.

Their hopes are dual Group Three winner Nicoletta, Group performer Camino Rocoso and in-form gelding True Enough.

True Enough will tackle black-type company for the first time and his connections believe the five-year-old, who has won six of his 14 career starts, will acquit himself well at that level.

“I think he will measure up,” Forsman said. “Every time we raise the bar he keeps putting his hand up.

“While it is a handy even field, there are some classy performers and he is not really well off under the set weights and penalties.

“I think he is the sort of horse that is very genuine. He will jump and put himself on the pace and I don’t think he will shirk his task that’s for sure.”

The Tauranga feature will be a defining point in Camino Rocoso’s preparation with his performance in the race dictating what path he takes in the future.

“Camino Rocoso is probably struggling to find his niche a little bit and what exactly his pet distance is and where he is best suited,” Forsman said.

“The 1400m was a bit of a warm-up for this weekend last time and he was just a bit outpaced so hopefully from (barrier) one he can jump and roll along and be somewhere near the pace.

“How he performs will dictate whether we stick to the mile in this company or try him over further (ground).”

Stablemate Nicoletta hasn’t had the best of luck recently and Forsman is expecting an improved performance from the mare after she tailed the field home last start at Ellerslie.

“Nicoletta has just been a little unlucky,” he said. “Nothing seems to go right for her lately. She finally struck a win-able race and I thought she would be very hard to beat last start then the rain came and that heavy track really tripped her up quite badly.

“Opie (Bosson, jockey) didn’t knock her around that day and she will keep and she is well in under the set-weights and penalties. She has shown she is classy enough to take out a race like this.”

While Forsman said it is hard to separate his three runners he believes Nicoletta is the stable’s best chance in the race.

“I would possibly lean toward Nicoletta, just because she is proven at this level,” he said.

More autumn black-type targets could be in the offing for all three Baker-Forsman runners, however Forsman said their performances tomorrow will dictate that path.

“With Camino Rocoso we are not sure, we will just see how he races,” he said. “True Enough, it’s his first time in this company, so how he performs will dictate where he heads and Nicoletta, she could potentially head toward the Breeders’ Stakes (Gr.1, 1600m) at Te Aroha.”

– NZ Racing Desk



Marsh colts out to outshine Sun

Crown Prosecutor (inner), pictured beating In A Twinkling to give Stephen Marsh his first Gr.1 Vodafone NZ Derby at Ellerslie, is part of a strong Kiwi contingent in tomorrow’s Rosehill Guineas.

Stephen Marsh will have a dual-pronged attack on tomorrow’s Gr.1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m), with last start Gr.1 New Zealand Derby (2400m) winner Crown Prosecutor and Group One-placed colt Vernanme set to take on highly touted galloper The Autumn Sun.

The two Marsh-prepared colts join fellow New Zealand-trained gallopers Madison County, Surely Sacred and Arrogant, while further New Zealand-bred runners include Purple Sector (by Pins) and Tavistock three-year-old’s Yulong Tavion and Ablestock.

Marsh is pleased with how his duo have settled in and the Cambridge horseman is upbeat about their chances.

“They both travelled over really well. They got here last Saturday,” Marsh said.

“They had a nice gallop on Tuesday and basically ran up the straight on Thursday morning. They’re in great order. I couldn’t fault them.”

While Vernanme was always earmarked for the race, Marsh had initially thought about using the Gr.2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m) at Randwick next week as Crown Prosecutor’s stepping stone for the Gr.1 Australian Derby (2400m) on April 6.

“With the rain around we thought the Guineas might come up a bit weaker and it certainly opens the race up,” Marsh said.

“The likes of The Autumn Sun and a few others are stepping up to 2000m for the first time whereas we are hard fit. We have just gone from 2400m back to 2000m so I think we have got a few things in our favour.

“It is certainly great to have James McDonald on, we didn’t have a rider until the acceptances and we are lucky enough that his horse didn’t pay up. We have ended up with the best and gate 13 won’t be a problem.”

Vernanme is looking for a change of luck in the Rosehill Guineas.

Marsh suggests punters disregard Vernanme’s ninth placing in the New Zealand Derby with the brother to Australian Derby winner Shamrocker finding trouble on numerous occasions.

“Nothing went right in the Derby. He never really got into a rhythm,” Marsh said.

“I think it’s just a race to forget, but his runs previous to that were outstanding. Probably the question mark with him is the track. We don’t really know if he is going to cop it to this extent (heavy8 this morning), but he is very well in himself.

“He has Opie (Bosson) on and has drawn nicely and the track should still be playing fair by race four so he is going to get a gun run in behind the speed and being a 13-horse field he is not going to get too far back.”

With a large Kiwi contingent in the field, Marsh is confident he and his compatriots can take it up to Chris Waller’s boom colt The Autumn Sun.

“Half the field are Kiwis so it would be nice to get a Kiwi result, especially a Cambridge one,” Marsh said.

“I think the Kiwi horses are all good chances. They are all going well and it is good seeing a strong Kiwi contingent over here trying to get some of this Australian money.”

– NZ Racing Desk

Rain no concern for Kiwis

Madison County has trained on well in preparation for tomorrow’s Rosehill Guineas.

The heavens have opened over Sydney in the past week, but Cambridge horseman Andrew Forsman is one trainer who is not deterred by the subsequent wet track conditions at Rosehill tomorrow.

Forsman, who trains in partnership with Murray Baker, will line up three runners at the premier meeting and he believes each of them will handle the wet conditions well.

The Baker-Forsman partnership will start dual Group One winner Madison County in the Gr.1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) and he looks to be a major threat in the race after his fresh-up fourth-placing in the Gr.1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) earlier this month.

“He’s been very well and has probably improved sine that run,” Forsman said. “He would have needed that run and it knocked him around for a day or two afterward, but he has really come on with it and I think he will be a much improved horse for it.

“I was very happy with his run. He held his ground, he just got a fair way back, which is probably always going to be the case with his racing pattern. He hit the line every bit as good as what we wanted to see.”

Madison County will tackle the 2000m distance for the first time tomorrow and, although he was seen running home late in the Randwick Guineas last start, Forsman said it’s still unknown whether his charge will stay the distance.

“Often horses can run on, but it doesn’t necessarily mean they will get further in trip,” he said.

“So, 2000m first time round a couple of bends will be interesting for him. He will have to handle that, but he does relax well enough in his races. Whether he stays the trip or not we are not sure, but he will give himself every chance.”

Rosehill was rated a Heavy8 track yesterday and Forsman holds no concern about those conditions with Madison County already showing he can handle a wet track.

He won a trial at Avondale last year on a Heavy11 track and jockey Tommy Berry has been happy with the way he has handled the wet track at Warwick Farm this week.

“He has performed on rain-affected ground before,” Forsman said. “We were never really sure with how he would cope, but it has been pretty wet at Warwick Farm and he looks to have thrived and got through it pretty well.

“Tommy said his two pieces of work this week were better than what they were leading into the Randwick Guineas. We would be pretty disappointed if he didn’t handle the track.”

Zacada (nearest camera), pictured going down narrowly to Who Shot Thebarman in last year’s Sydney Cup, is above the odds in tomorrow’s Manion Cup..

While confident with Madison County, Forsman does hold a lot of respect for his opposition, particularly the Chris Waller-trained The Autumn Sun.

“We are pretty confident. It’s just a shame that he has to run into a very good horse in the Autumn Sun. He is going to be hard to beat,” Forsman said.

“Obviously there are some Kiwis coming over that are hardened and are dropping back from the (New Zealand) Derby, so there is certainly no doubts that they will run the 2000m.

“They are quite seasoned and he is effectively second-up heading to 2000m for the first time off the back of a mile.”

Forsman will also line-up Gr.1 Sydney Cup (3200m) aspirants Vin De Dance and Zacada in the Gr.3 N E Manion Cup (2400m) earlier in the card.

“They have travelled over really well,” Forsman said. “They look to have settled in. They have done a fair bit of travelling between them now so there are no worries there. They had a nice easy hit-out yesterday morning.”

Forsman believes his two hopes in the Group Three race will thrive in the wet conditions and said punters are being offered overs with Zacada at $21 with TAB Bookmakers, while Vin De Dance has been marked a $6.50 winning chance.

“The wet track certainly shouldn’t worry either of them,” Forsman said. “I think relative to what they have done they are reasonably well off at the weights. They should both run very competitive races.

“I don’t think there is much between them, but the market would suggest otherwise. I think Vin De Dance is quite short and Zacada is relatively long. I wouldn’t really split them too much to be honest.”

– NZ Racing Desk






Rondinella’s Sydney plans delayed

Rondinella won’t be in Sydney this weekend, but she could still get to compete at the Sydney Carnival.

Rondinella will not head to Sydney for the Gr.1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) on Saturday, but a trip across the Tasman still remains on the cards for the Roger James and Robert Wellwood-trained runner.

“She’s not heading to Sydney this weekend, but we certainly still have some hope that she will get over there,” Wellwood said.

“There are two main options. There’s the BMW (Gr.1, 2400m) or the Chairman’s (Gr.2, 2600m).”

The BMW is at Rosehill later this month, while the Chairman’s Quality will be run at Randwick on April 6.

The smart daughter of Ocean Park produced a bold showing last start when third behind Melody Belle and Danzdanzdance in the Gr.1 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes (2000m) at Ellerslie earlier this month.

“I thought it was a really good run from her,” Wellwood said. “The track definitely didn’t suit her and the two mares who beat her are proven on heavy surfaces.

“She got inconvenienced at about the 500m mark and when she finally got balanced up she started making up ground on two of the benchmark horses in New Zealand so I thought it was a super run that had a lot of merit.”

Rondinella has had seven runs this preparation including three wins and a second in the Listed Kaimai Stakes (2000m) as well as her last start placing.

Wellwood said the decision was made not to head over this weekend because they didn’t want to run her on an unsuitable surface so late in her campaign.

“She’s come through the Bonecrusher really well,” Wellwood said. “She’s coming through her runs extremely well now.

“In saying that, she has had a fair bit of racing in a short period of time and to give her another race on a surface that doesn’t suit her just wasn’t ideal this weekend and the rain doesn’t look like it’s going to stop in Sydney.”

Meanwhile, stablemate Hanger could head towards the Gr.2 Manco Easter Handicap (1600m) at Ellerslie on April 20 after his solid second at Tauranga on Saturday.

“It was a good performance on the weekend,” Wellwood said. “Unfortunately the winner got a bit of a kick on the turn and by the time he got out it proved very hard to reel them in at Tauranga.

“I thought it was really good to see him relax and race kindly because sometimes he can do things a little bit wrong.

“We are undecided yet as to where we will head with him, but the Easter is on the radar.”

– NZ Racing Desk

Espresso Martini on top again

Espresso Martini (Lynsey Satherley) was all class at Tauranga yesterday.

Promising Cambridge three-year-old Espresso Martini resumed from a brief break in fine fashion when she dealt to her older rivals at Tauranga yesterday.

The royally-bred High Chaparral filly hadn’t been seen since finishing down the track in the Gr.1 Levin Classic (1600m) at Trentham back in January. That unplaced run came off the back of a tidy effort for fifth in the Gr.2 Eight Carat Classic (1600m) at Ellerslie on Boxing Day and followed a win at the same venue in the Listed Trevor Eagle Memorial 3YO (1500m) earlier in December.

Sent straight to the front from a handy barrier draw by rider Lynsey Satherley, Espresso Martini dominated proceedings in the 1400m event.

After stacking the field up approaching the home turn, Espresso Martini kicked strongly in the final 200m to win going away by a length on the Dead4 rated surface.

Co-trainer Murray Baker, who prepares the filly with Andrew Forsman, had expected such a run from his charge and got exactly what he was looking for.

“She is a pretty nice filly and we were expecting a forward showing from her,” Baker said.

“In saying that she was taking on the older horses first up so it was a good effort to win.”

Baker felt the brief spell after the disappointing run in the Levin Classic had worked well in Espresso Martini’s favour.

“She definitely needed a break after a couple of tough runs and she has come back nicely,” he said.

“She is a 1400m-1600m filly so the distance was perfect for her as was the cut in the track, which is something I think she prefers.”

Baker will let the “dust settle” before deciding on an autumn path for the filly, who is a daughter of Gr.1 Levin Classic (1600m) winnerKeepa Cruisin (also placed on two further occasions at Group One level).

Baker was philosophical when questioned about the performance of his three stable runners yesterday’s feature Trentham event, the Gr.1 Al Basti Equiworld Dubai New Zealand Oaks (2400m).

Savabeel filly Clementina finished an unlucky fourth after being held-up in the home straight while race favourite Queen Of Diamonds and Rubira dropped out in the run home after both looked likely prospects early in the run home.

“I thought Clementina was very good as she didn’t get a lot of luck in the run home and made ground strongly at the end,” he said.

“The other two were a little disappointing and, on the surface, they probably didn’t quite get the trip.

“They will come home and we can take a look at how they pull up before we do too much more with them.”

– NZ Racing Desk

Bolt From The Blue again

Bolt From The Blue (Vinnie Colgan) living up to his name with an impressive win at Tauranga yesterday.

Speed machine Bolt From The Blue was back to his front-running best when he showed his three-year-old rivals a clean pair of heels at Tauranga yesterday.

The Tony Pike-trained galloper had indicated his readiness to resume from a four-month break over the summer months with a hollow victory over 1000m at the Avondale trials in late February.

Successful on debut over 1000m at Taupo back in September, the Rip Van Winkle gelding was then narrowly defeated over 1200m at Tauranga in his second start by subsequent stakes winner Spirits Aubeer.

A disappointing run at Rotorua saw him put aside before resuming yesterday when he was sent out a warm favourite for the 1200m contest.

Hunted to the lead by rider Vinnie Colgan, Bolt From The Blue had his six rivals in trouble a long way from home. Colgan let the brakes go early in the home straight and the stylish chestnut dashed away to win untouched by five and a half lengths in a smart 1.10.01 on a Dead5 rated surface.

“He likes to run that way (in front) and the track on the dead side suited him,” Colgan said.

“He did trial nicely at Avondale a couple of weeks back so the writing was on the wall.

“He had a real good kick at the 400m, although he’s still a little big in condition, so he will improve with the race.”

Pike stable representative Chris McNab said they had been expecting a good performance based on the improvement the horse had made during his summer break.

“He’s come back way better and way stronger this time,” he said.

Bolt From The Blue is owned by a large syndicate that includes the estate of the late Peter Mitchell and carries the colours made famous by Mitchell’s champion galloper, Bonecrusher.

From Flying Spur mare Miss Ottey, he was a $50,000 purchase from the Windsor Park Stud draft at the 2017 National Yearling Sale and hails from an extended family that includes the Gr.1 Golden Slipper (1200m) winners Capitalist and Merlene.

– NZ Racing Desk



Double celebrations for McCarroll

Chicane (Ashvin Goindasamy) recording the first leg of a double for Cambridge trainer Ross McCarroll at Tauranga yesterday.

It was a day of double celebrations for Cambridge trainer Ross McCarroll at Tauranga yesterday.

McCarroll, who has an excellent strike rate with his small team, struck early on the programme when Chicane prevailed in the Mills Reef Winery and Restaurant 1200 in the hands of Cambridge apprentice Ashvin Goindasamy, then four races later her stablemate Inscription took the Pacific Stone Kitchen and Vanity Benchtops 1600 when ridden by Trudy Thornton.

Both mares are part-owned by McCarroll and have shown plenty of promise with the wins coming as no surprise.

Chicane, a five-year-old daughter of Coats Choice, had won four of her previous 17 starts and two of those wins, her latest two, had also been on the Gate Pa track at Tauranga. She defeated the Group One performer Tiptronic at Tauranga in March last year and won again on the course fresh-up last November when beating the promising Bevan Street.

Chicane was having her fifth start this campaign when she lined up yesterday and she hinted a win was near when second behind the smart Le Castile on the Tauranga track on January 2.

Inscription (Trudy Thornton) scoring a strong win at Tauranga yesterday.

Yesterday she dropped back to 1200m and was again fresh, having not raced since January 13, and she got the decision by a nose from Dama Zorro when breaking 1:10 for the trip.

Inscription was also fresh-up yesterday and she won with authority, scoring by two and a quarter lengths from King’s Cross in a success story for Cambridge stables.

Not only is King’s Cross also from Cambridge (trained by Stephen Marsh), Red Sky At Night (trained by Margaret Falconer) was third with the winner’s stablemate Calligraphy fourth and the Ralph Manning-trained Cutting Up Rough fifth of the six runners.

Inscription (by Cape Blanco) and Calligraphy (by Perfectly Ready) are not only stablemates, they are half-sisters bred by the Mayne family and raced by them.

Inscription played second fiddle to her half-sister with punters installing Calligraphy the $2.60 second favourite behind King’s Cross, but on the day punters who took the $8.30 win odds for Inscription (and even more on earlier Fixed Odds betting) were the ones celebrating.

Inscription was having her 11th start and had shown plenty of talent with two previous wins and four placings. Her most recent outing had been at Tauranga on January 18 and that day she finished fourth to the subsequent Group One placegetter Rondinella.

She had cleared maiden ranks at Te Awamutu over 1400m in May 2017 and her other win came at Rotorua in November last year.