Oaks dream for staying-bred filly
7 September 2017, 1:07 p.m.
Blanco Belle will face an early test in black type company on Saturday and her performance at Wanganui could fuel a longer-term dream of an Australian classic.
She will make her second appearance in the Listed The O’Leary’s Fillies’ Stakes following a dominant effort to win on debut at Hawera last month.
|Blanco Belle Photo: Race Images Palmerston North|
“She’s a staying filly and this is her first preparation,” part-owner and trainer Susan Rainford said.
“She was difficult to break in – she’s tough and strong for her age, even though she doesn’t actually turn three until October.
“There’s not a lot around for staying fillies in New Zealand so we might give her a spell after this. There’s a nice race in Australia – the VRC Oaks, that’s ambitious but you never know.”
Rainford said she had been particularly pleased with Blanco Belle’s recent work at New Plymouth.
“She galloped last Tuesday, the 29th, in a faster time than Kawi and this Tuesday her track rider said she galloped better, more settled.”
The only glitch in the preparation has been confirming a jockey for the filly.
“I thought I had Chris Johnson, but his agent rang on Monday to say he was riding at Riccarton and a lot of the other jockeys were taken,” Rainford said.
“Kate Cowan, who won on her at Hawera, is also riding down there so I’ve got Sarah MacNab.”
Blanco Belle could prove a smart piece of business for Rainford and her partners as she only cost them $3000 out of Cambridge Stud’s draft at New Zealand Bloodstock’s National Weanling Sale at Karaka in 2015.
“She was the only Cape Blanco in the sale and I thought a lot of him,” she said. “He was well-performed and by Galileo.” – NZ Racing Desk.