Saracino on target for Melbourne

What a way to shed maiden ranks. Saracino (Lisa Allpress) proving too good in the Lisa Chittick Foxbridge Plate at Te Rapa today.

What a way to shed maiden ranks. Saracino (Lisa Allpress) proving too good in the Lisa Chittick Foxbridge Plate at Te Rapa today.

The connections of Saracino asked a serious question of the three-year-old at Te Rapa today and the colt’s answer has booked his trip to the Melbourne spring carnival.

The exciting son of Per Incanto broke his maiden at the expense of the older horses with a commanding front-running performance in the Gr.2 Lisa Chittick Foxbridge Plate, leading home a Cambridge quinella with No More Tears.

“We want to get him to Australia and a race like this has given us a good line on where he’s at,” said Andrew Forsman, who trains Saracino with Murray Baker.

“We’ve always known he had the ability and it was nice to see him get to the front and keep going and not prick his ears and pull up.

Raced by Wellingtonian Lib Petagna, Saracino’s main aim will be the $A1 million Gr. 1 Caulfield Guineas on October 8 and a decision on whether he has another run in New Zealand will be made after the weekend.

Saracino hadn’t raced since he finished third in last season’s Gr.1 Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes, but he had won an open heat at the recent Te Teko trials.

“He came on a lot after the trial and he will improve again,” said Forsman. “He’s a nice, athletic horse and a natural who is a pleasure to train.”

Saracino bounced straight to the front and when rider Lisa Allpress asked him for a serious effort in the straight he quickly changed gear and comfortably held his rivals at bay.

“He’s quite professional and was so happy out there,” said Allpress. “He had his ears pricked and was on the bridle. I just had to hold him up as long as I could.”

No More Tears pleased trainer Stephen Marsh with her second placing ahead of a crack at the Gr.1 Makfi Challenge Stakes, while another Hastings hopeful in Authentic Paddy got home well for third.

– NZ Racing Desk.