Lowland Stakes next stop for Sofia Rosa

Stephen Marsh4 (640x512)

Stephen Marsh believes his leading filly Sofia Rosa will have an extra edge in her next two starts.

The Cambridge trainer (pictured) has confirmed two central districts targets for the three-year-old, who is enjoying a break following her Group Two success in the Mongolian Khan Royal Stakes at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day.

“She came through the race really well and she’s gone to the paddock for three weeks,” said Marsh.

“She’ll come back to get ready for the Lowland Stakes then go straight into the New Zealand Oaks. The Lowland fits in well now it’s not on Derby day and we don’t have to worry about looking for riders.”

While Sofia Rosa has won twice at Ellerslie, she hasn’t proved the easiest of rides with her tendency to lay in down the straight on both occasions.

“She’s had the two runs left-handed and they were very good,” said Marsh. “She was third on debut in a stakes race at Riccarton as a two-year-old and then she won at Hastings before she went to Sydney. She could well be an even better filly going left-handed.”

Sofia Rosa, whose sister (Lot 198) will be offered by Westbury Stud at Karaka on January 25, performed creditably in Sydney to finish sixth in the Gr. 2 Tea Rose Stakes and seventh in the Gr.1 Flight Stakes in her two-start Australian campaign in the spring and an autumn return is possible.

“Trentham is her main goal and, depending on what happens, she could head across the Tasman again for the Oaks,” said Marsh.

The $A1 million Gr.1 ATC Oaks will be run at Randwick on April 9.

Meanwhile, stablemate Serious Satire is progressing well toward a return to full work at her Cambridge quarters.

“She’s on the water walker and she’ll be back in the stable on Monday week,” said Marsh.

Serious Satire won the Gr. 3 Gold Trail Stakes in the spring and was spelled after she jarred up when unplaced in the Gr.2 James & Annie Sarten Memorial Stakes at Te Rapa.

– NZ Racing Desk.