Track Work 25 February 2020

Four times Vodafone NZ Derby winning trainer Roger James has filly TWO ILLICIT in top order ahead of the marquee 3yo event at Ellerslie on Saturday.

The last Derby winner Roger James trained was also a filly, SILENT ACHIEVER, in 2012 and TWO ILLICIT looks a big chance to emulate that victory based on this morning’s work.

Working on the plough, she went at a steady clip from the 1400m in 1.35, rounding it off in 38.5 and was full of running. Roger also has another decent chance in the race with gelding REGGIEWOOD, who worked very similar tempo to TWO ILLICIT, in company with MONLULA, running home in 38.9.

Last year’s Vodafone NZ Derby winning trainer Stephen Marsh is quietly confident of going back to back after SCORPZ produced a nice piece of work this morning. Working over 1600m, SCORPZ cut out 1.51, home in 38.8. He looks in fine order.

TELEKINETIC meets a tidy field of two year olds on Thursday at Pukekohe, but proved her readiness with a very impressive final hit-out. She strode out 1000m in 1.04, home in a brisk 36.9. She should be right in it on Thursday.

BERGAMOT and DARCEE QUE continued their Al Basti Equiworld Dubai NZ Oaks build up with a tidy 1400m gallop, finishing off in 37.4.

ARETHA and BIRDSONG look to be coming to hand nicely after freshen ups, working 1000m in 1.05, 38.2.

RUN TO PERFECTION is another leading hope from the Marsh stable this weekend. He’s run top races all prep and that’s set to continue. He worked over 1000m, home in 38.4.

SANTA CATARINA seems to produce her best at Ellerslie and seems to be back to her best form. She was unlucky there last time after winning the start before, and should prove most competitive again. She came home in 38.5 after working over 1000m.

Her stablemate could be tough to beat also. PRETTY TO SEA is another who loves Ellerslie and after winning three starts back, has had no luck in her subsequent two starts including the Group One Sistema Railway. She should meet another good field in the Haunui Farm King’s Plate but with luck can be right in it. She worked over 1000m in 1.08, home in 39.

KAIPAKI ROAD steps up to 2100m for the Sunline Vase and although looked a tad disappointing last time, she clearly had no favours with the race tempo. Back to her own age group should help also. She came home in 39.7 after working 1400m.

The penny may have dropped with RIP EM UP and it will be exciting to see how she measures up this weekend. She got a long way off them at Te Rapa last time to the races, and as usual that was not suitable, but still managed to hit the line hard for third. She finished off her work nicely in 37.2.

EVALINA has been in top form since her return from Australia. She got back and flushed wide on the corner in the JR & N Berkett Telegraph Handicap last time, so had excuses. She’s another Marsh runner who seems to save her best for Ellerslie. She worked over 1000m in 1.07, 38.8.

MOLTO VELOCE followed in near on identical work.

Promising STAR TSAR had THOMAS AQUINAS for company and they did it nicely over 1200m in 1.21, 38.6. STAR TSAR was an unlucky runner last time out and is certainly one to stick with.

Ultra consistent filly HASSTOBEGOOD deserves a break-through, after running top races of late. She worked over 1000 in 1.05, 37.8.

MADAM HASS went 1000m also, home in a shade over 40. She went to the line nicely after being shuffled out of contention on the turn last time out. She’s always shown plenty of ability.

FELAAR heads to the Barfoot and Thompson Auckland Cup next weekend after a super run in the Joe McDonald Avondale Cup. He worked a full round before being clocked from the 600 in 39.9.

LONDON BANKER and AMAL ROSE both worked as a blanket of fog prevented final 600’s being timed. LONDON BANKER went 1600m in 1.52, 1000m in 1.07. AMAL ROSE went similar, 1600m in 1.53, 1000 in 1.05.

Others to be timed and final 600m sectionals were as follows: