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Eye-catcher rises to Group One challenge

24 October 2017, 2:30 p.m.

First impressions can count for everything and Endean Rose quickly won over Rotorua trainer Iain Kennedy.

The diminutive mare has subsequently won six races under his guidance and turned in a career-best performance in Sunday’s Gr.1 Livamol Classic (2040m).

Endean Rose Photo: Race Images Palmerston North

The daughter of champion sire Savabeel exceeded expectations at Hawke’s Bay where she finished third behind Wait A Sec and Gingernuts in the weight-for-age feature.

“We were hoping to get in the top six, it looked pretty tough and ambitious but she did us proud,” Kennedy said.

“Our plan was to go forward and get her to relax and give her a chance. Cameron (Lammas) did a beautiful job on her.”

Kennedy races Endean Rose with Rotorua friends Andrew Burton and Linda Hunt, the former having purchased her privately after she was passed in at Karaka in 2011.

“He got her quite cheaply. She was tiny and it was before Savabeel had really hit his straps,” Kennedy said.

“My wife Linda and I went to Andrew’s place and walked through the paddock to look at yearlings and we really liked Endean Rose.

“Andrew started laughing and said she’s not a yearling, she’s a two-year-old. She stood out to us and we’ve just taken her along quietly and given her plenty of time.

“We’ll sit down and look at all the options now. We’re enjoying racing her for now and she’ll definitely be put in foal next year.”

The Gr.3 OMF Stakes (2000m) at Ellerslie on Melbourne Cup day and the Gr.1 Zabeel Classic (2000m) back at Auckland on Boxing Day are races likely to be placed on Endean Rose’s programme. – NZ Racing Desk.