It was a busy and successful sporting day Sunday 31st January with New Zealand teams taking out the World Rugby Sevens in Wellington and the Black Caps clinching the One Day Cricket Series against Pakistan at Eden Park. But for a group of 33 people scattered around different part of New Zealand, their main focus for the day was how their talented 3yo Filly, LADY IFFRAAJ, would perform in the S$75,000 Novice event at Kranji race course in Singapore. An emphatic last to first winner at her last start in December, “LORDE” as this filly is nicknamed had been freshened and was now stepping up in grade over 1000 metres on the Kranji Polytrack. Drawn nicely at barrier 4, LADY IFFRAAJ had the services of up and coming Mohammed Firdaus to ride She jumped nicely and settled in third place behind the pacemaker NOVA EAGLE (Nunes) and BE BOLD (Brown). As they turned, BE BOLD surged up to wrest the lead from NOVA EAGLE, but LADY IFFRAAJ was poised to pounce and mounted an irresistible finishing run to take the lead in the last 100 metres and won the event by three quarters of a length. Click HERE to see race replay.
LADY IFFRAAJ wins again in Singapore 31st Jan 2016
Fortuna Director, John Galvin was naturally very pleased, ” We have always had a lot of time for this filly and she seems to have more than her share of ability. She could prove to be a very good horse in Singapore in due course.”
LADY IFFRAAJ has now had five starts in Singapore for two wins, two seconds and a third and has already amassed S$100,000 in prizemoney earnings. Bred by Jamieson Park, she was acquired for Fortuna by David Ellis at the 2014 Karaka Premier Sale for NZ$27,500
Click HERE to read more about the three Yearlings
Talented 3yo Filly, WINDBORNE (Darci Brahma-Sweet Dreams Baby) takes on a good field of 3yo’s over 1200 metres down the Trentham chute on Wellington Cup Day (Race 3). Fresh up after last running in the Pegasus Stakes at Riccarton in November, where she bungled the start, connections are hoping that “Annie” can maintain her unbeaten fresh up record. The winner of two black type races, the Murdock Newell Stakes at Avondale as a 2yo and the Canterbury Belle Stakes as a 3yo, WINDBORNE has drawn barrier eight in a field of nine and will be ridden by Matthew Cameron.
WINDBORNE taking out the Listed Canterbury Belle Stakes at Riccarton November 2015
At the Gore Guineas meeting 5yo SIR DARCI (Darci Brahma-Dominant) is also racing fresh up in the Rating 75 1200 metre event. The winner of four races, SIR DARCI has struggled to find form this past twelve months, but appears to be in great order and has drawn nicely at barrier four; he will be ridden by Cameron Lammas in race 11.
At just her fourth race day start, 3yo Filly LADY IFFRAAJ (Iffraj-Naturo) overcame the outside barrier draw to win her first race in Singapore in emphatic style over 1000 metres. Her previous three starts had produced two 2nds and a 3rd, so clearly “LORDE”, as she is nicknamed, had more than her share of ability. Ridden by the vastly experienced Corey Brown, she jumped well from the barriers, but Brown settled her back in the running third from last. Approaching the turn, he set her alight and as they straightened, she was the widest runner but a good eight lengths from the leader. However, not to be denied, LADY IFFRAAJ maintained a strong, sustained sprint and went to the line a length clear of her nearest rival. Click HERE to see race replay.
LADY IFFRAAJ winning Singapore 13th December 2015.Click to enlarge.
Acquired by David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna Syndicators at the 2014 Karaka Premier Sale, LADY IFFRAAJ is raced by an ownership group of 33 individuals, many of whom are first time owners. Sunday’s win has now taken LADY IFFRAAJ’s Singapore earning to close to S$70,000
First away on Saturday at Awapuni is 5yo SIR DARCI. At the scene of his last start 4th over 1400 metres, this time SIR DARCI steps up to 1600 metres and goes up in grade to Rating 85. Wearing blinkers at his last start, he pulled early in the running and this weekend he we will be allowed to stride forward. To be ridden by Cameron Lammas from Barrier 9 in Race 5 @ 3.27 pm.
At Te Rapa, 5yo HIGHLY LIKELY will back up at Te Rapa after his unfortunate run at Ellerslie last Saturday, Stumbling badly as he left the barriers, HIGHLY LIKELY finished up running in the rear, when he is a natural front runner. Through the race in good shape, his connections have made the decision to back him up in the Rating 75 2400 Dunstan Feeds Qualifier on a track where he has tasted success before. To be ridden by the highly experienced Mark Du Plessis from Barrier 6 in Race 5 at 3.10 pm.
Singapore on Friday night see 4yo Mare SECRET SPICE is having her 2nd start back from a freshen up in a Class 4 event over 1600 metres. She will be ridden by Stable Apprentice CK NG who claims 4kgs.
Sunday evening sees 3yo Filly, LADY IFFRAAJ make an appearance, She has shown quality in her first three outings in Singapore with two seconds and a third to her record and she gets another crack to make the Winners Circle on the last day of racing in Singapore for the 2015 season. Sh starts in an Initiation over 1000 metres and will be ridden by the very experienced Corey Brown.
The 7yo Sprinter EATONS GOLD very rarely puts in a bad race and gets his chance to win in this Benchmark 67 event over 1200 metres on Sunday. The five win horse who has win ell over S$300,000 in Singapore will be ridden by Apprentice CK NG, claiming 4kgs
Two last start winners feature among Fortuna runners over the next few days.
First away is OUR DRAHMA QUEEN (4yo Mare – Darci Brahma-Queen Cha Cha) who broke Maidens at New Plymouth a couple of weeks ago and heads back to the same venue to contest a Rating 65 event Thursday 3rd December. Drawn nicely again at barrier 4 and to be ridden by Matt Cameron, she has been working in great style since her last start victory.
OUR DRAHMA QUEEN wins for first time – New Plymouth 20th November 2015 – Click to enlarge
In Singapore, Friday 4th, BUTCH CASSIDY (3yo gelding Darci Brahma-Twelve Carat) has his second race day start in an Initiation 1200 metre event on the Polytrack, Apprentice M Zaki to ride from Barrier 7. BUTCH CASSIDY ran 7th on debut over 1100 metres after being slightly slow away form the barrier and connections are looking for an improvement at this 2nd start.
Ellerslie on Saturday sees the very much in form HIGHLY LIKELY (5yo Gelding – High Chaparral-Starrinka) contest the Dunstan Feeds Rating 75 event over 2200 metres. His last three starts have produced a win and two very close 2nds over staying distances and although he needs to lug 60kgs in this event, he has been working in great style and should be very competitive in this event. Cameron Lammas to ride from barrier 9.
In Singapore on Sunday, the last start winner, READY FORTUNE (6yo Gelding – More Than Ready-Bahira) steps up to Class 4 level over the 1800 metre distance. Significantly down in weight since his last, this grade is a lot harder than where he has been running in recent times, but the horse is in great form and will be running on strongly at the business end of the race. CK NG, a 4kg claiming apprentice takes the mount and brings the horse’s carried weight down to just 48kgs.
The Class 5 Apprentice Riders race over 1700 metres sees the durable OUR RIVER DANCER (5yo Gelding – Danehill Dancer-Distinctly) get a chance to extend his winning record in Singapore to three wins. A bold front running type, he ran a solid 4th at his last start, a resuming run over 1600 metres and will be improved by that outing. Apprentice CK NG, who has won on the horse previously and who claims 4kgs, takes the mount
A quiet weekend for the Fortuna team, but two interesting runners in Singapore.
First away is last start winner SECRET SPICE. This 4yo mare by Sahkees Secret out of the good race mare Caparison has been spelled after a nice victory in October. She resumes in a Kranji D Stakes race over 1100 metres, a distance that will be too short for her, but her rider CK Ng claims 4kgs and from the No 1 barrier and in a fresh state, she could sneak into a minor place.
SECRET SPICE winning Singapore 18th Oct 2015. Click to enlarge
Race 7 sees the improving stayer KING SAVINSKY (Savabeel-Lynisky) back up from a strong 4th in good Class 4 company last Friday over the 1700 metre trip, after previously winning in Class 5 company. This Friday, looking for his 3rd win in Singapore, he goes to 1900 metres, which will suit him perfectly and will be ridden from barrier 5 with the vastly experienced Alan Munro aboard. This improving galloper looks to be well placed in this event.
King Savinsky winning in Singapore 6th November 2015. Click to enlarge
Weighing just 440kgs, 6yo READY FORTUNE (More Than Ready-Bahira) is hardly imposing as a racehorse, but he never stops trying on the racetrack. Sunday 22nd November in Singapore, he won for the 4th time in that jurisdiction, with three of his wins coming in 2015. From 42 race day starts in Singapore he has now won four times and has only finished out of prizemoeny winning placings on a handful of occasions. As a result he has has now accumulated S$160,000 approximately in earnings.
Drawn out at Barrier 10 in a Class 5 1700 metre event, Trainer Mark Walker had elected to put the 2kg claimer Zawari Razali, who had won on the horse two starts back, aboard again. “Basil” as the horse is nicknamed, ran at the rear of the field in the run, but Zawari moved him to the outside and into the race as they turned. A couple of cracks with the whip and READY FORTUNE commenced a sustained irresistible run down the outside to carry him over the winning line in first place by half a length. Click HERE to see the race replay.
Acquired by David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna Ltd at the 2011 Karaka Premier Sale, READY FORTUNE is a half brother to the dual Stakes winner in NZ and also a winner in Singapore, RIO FORTUNE (by Captain Rio) and is raced in Singapore by the FORTUNA NZ Stable on behalf of his NZ based ownership group, comprising 27 individuals.
4yo Mare OUR DRAHMA QUEEN (Darci Brahma-Queen Cha Cha) showed her true qualities at New Plymouth today 20th November. A tad disappointing in her three starts to date, the Training Team of Stephen Autridge/Jamie Richards had applied the blinkers this start and instructed rider, Matt Cameron, to ride her positively from her good draw. Straight to the front, she was never headed, kicked away at the top of the straight and went to the line nicely with a length to spare. Click HERE to see result and replay. A half sister to the Australian Group One mare SUAVITO (by Thorn Park) only commenced racing as a four year old, suffering a shoulder injury as young three year old that at one stage looked as it may be career ending. Brought privately from her breeders, George and Maryanne Simon, OUR DRAHMA QUEEN is raced by a syndicate comprising 27 individual owners.
Our Drahma Queen wins her first race at New Plymouth. Click to enlarge
Nine starters for Fortuna this weekend, seven in Singapore and two in New Zealand
Friday at New Plymouth sees OUR DRAHMA QUEEN contest a Maiden 1400 metre event. After a nice third on debut at Taupo in September, this 4yo mare has disappointed us a bit in her next two runs, however she has been good in her lead up work and blinkers go on. Matt Cameron will ride from Barrier 6 .
Saturday at Awapuni, SIR DARCI has his 3rd race in his 5yo campaign. His first two outings saw him strike trouble in the straight each time, although he did run 3rd in his last outing at Hastings. Up in trip to 1400 metres and with blinkers on, he gets his chance in the rating 75 event. Up and coming apprentice rider, Dylan Mo, takes the mount and 3kgs off the horses back, from the wide barrier draw of 10.
Friday night in Singapore sees three runners. First away is DOUBLE JEOPARDY who ran a slashing race last time when fresh up from a break at a distance too short for him. This time he steps up to a more suitable 1600 metres on the Polytrack -Race 4, from the nice barrier draw of 4 and has Champion hoop Manoel Nunes in the saddle. Race 6 sees last start winner KING SAVINSKY up in class ( Class 4) over the 1700 metres on the Poly from a lovely draw at 3 and the veteran Alan Munro takes the mount again. The well performed EATONS GOLD tackles a strong Class 3 event over 1000 metres on the poly in race 8. He has a tricky draw from barrier 9 which will test the mettle of horse and rider Rizuan Shafiq, but he is in great form and with luck in the running, can be right in this event.
Sunday evening sees two Fortuna runners in the Restricted Maiden event over 1100 metres – Race 2 – on the Polytrack. 3yo BUTCH CASSIDY (by Darci Brahma) makes his raceday debut in this $75k event – somewhat moderate in his trials to date, trainer Mark Walker has elected to apply the blinkers and engaged the services of one of the strongest riders in Singapore, Alan Munro, drawn barrier 4. In the same event is 3yo Filly LADY IFFRAAJ (by Iffraaj) who has impressed with a smart 2nd and 3rd from her too previous outings in Singapore. Manoel Nunes takes the mount from barrier 3 and she could prove very hard to beat in this event. Race 3 sees one of the Fortuna favourites in Singapore, 6yo READY FORTUNE second up from a break, in a Class 5 1700 metre event. Not the biggest horse in the world at 430kgs ringing wet, he always punches above his weight. Apprentice Zawari who rode him when he last won, takes the mount again from barrier 10 and takes 2kgs off the horses back. Finally in Race 10, the durable OUR RIVER DANCER tackles a Class 5 1600 metre event. Second up from a spell he will be ridden by Rizuan Shafiq from barrier 4.