Friday Flash 1st April

Headline News;

RAGAMUFFIN makes it back to back wins when winning at Matamata 30th March – see full story below

Fortuna Racing has now won 14 races so far in 2022, 8 in NZ from just 22 starts, 6 in Singapore – NZ Strike Rate 2.75 for Calendar year

Changing of the Guard at Te Akau Racing – one Champion Trainer departs, another returns

Fortuna has seven runners Friday and Saturday, one in Aus, one in NZ and five in Singapore

NO ENVY runs in the Maiden 2455m event at Geelong Friday 1st April – Race 3 @ 4pm NZT. This Irish Bred 4yo made his Aus debut 3rd March over 1850m and battled away for 6th place after getting back in the run. Has continued to work well since, is very fit and will relish the step up in trip. To be ridden by Damian Thornton. Bred to stay all day, this trip suits – can feature in this

New Zealand
NAVALHA contests the R74 1400m at Avondale Saturday – Race 4 @ 2.18pm. Slow away at Ellerslie last start 1200m, he has been working well and getting lots of Barrier practise – Up in trip for the first time to 1400m, Te Akau Stable Apprentice Parmar Singh takes 3kgs off his back. Talented galloper as his two starts two wins at the start of his career attest, he needs to be taken on trust due to his tardiness at the start, but can feature if he gets away well.

HIDDEN PROMISE is in the Class 5 1600 Polytrack – Race 6 @ 7.30pm NZ Time and will be ridden by Stable Apprentice, Jerlyn Seow from Barrier 11. Wide draw is tricky but finds Division 2 of this event and has in form apprentice taking 3kgs off his back. Needs some luck in the running, but is he gets it he is a good each way chance in this

Here is what the Singapore Turf Club team have to say about this race;

1st Pick: CROWN DANCING (3)
Narrowly defeated by Diamond Mine last start after finding the lead. A repeat performance wins this but could give Benny Woodworth his first win back in Singapore.
2nd Pick: FLYING YELLOW (7)
Another who came out of the race in behind Amore Amore who go no favors with how the race transpired. Could figure in the placings with a good run in transit.
3rd Pick: HIDDEN PROMISE (4)
Rider reported that his whip broke in the run and this didn’t help the chances of his horse. Happy to forgive as the two starts before were good from him.
4th Pick: BLITZ POWER (2)
Since her multiple wins, she hasn’t really caught the eye at the races. Her trial on Tuesday suggested she is well though, not tested but sticking with them throughout the 1000m gallop. Keeping her safe.

OLYMPIA runs in the Class 5 1100 Polytrack – Race 9 @ 9pm NZT – to be ridden by Ronnie Stewart. Still a Maiden, he disappointed last time after two good placings previous starts – can atone here and is a good place chance

ENTERTAINER contests the Kranji Stakes A 1000m Polytrack – the feature race of the day for S$100,000 – will be ridden by Harry Kasim from Barrier 1 – the winner of seven races at 1100m but has yet to win at this 1000m trip from two starts – has beaten most of this field at different times and represents a very strong each way chance here and can win

Here is what the Singapore Turf Club team have to say about this race;

1st Pick: CELAVI (1)
Trial suggests she is well after the most recent failure over 1100m. Stable have been patient and carefully selected good races for her and this looks one of those.
2nd Pick: SACRED GIFT (5)
Boasts a nice 1000m record with three wins and a second from seven attempts. Expecting another positive performance after the big win last start. Will most certainly get a hot tempo in the run to sit off and charge home late.
3rd Pick: DARC BOUNTY (4)
Another horse who not only caught the eye last start but is a four-time winner over the distance. Seems to be in a good patch of form now and could surprise as a danger here.
4th Pick: ENTERTAINER (2)
Seven from ten over the 1100m but has yet to break through over 1000m, funny how it works like that. Always needs to be kept safe because his best is good enough.

KING ARTHUR is in the Class 3 1200 Poly and will be ridden by Stable Apprentice F Yusoff from an outside barrier – one of the Stars in Singapore over recent months with 5 wins from last 8 starts, he meets another Star in Lucky Jinsha (5 wins from last 6 starts). Difficult draw but he has handled wide draws with aplomb before – Strong each way chance here.

HADEER is in the same race as King Arthur – a very consistent performer, his 4 Singapore wins have all come on the Turf, but was brave 2nd on the Poly behind King Arthur this trip 13th Feb – gets 3kg Claim courtesy of Stable Apprentice Jerlyn Seowis a strong contender here and can run in the top 3 from his nice barrier draw

Here is what the Singapore Turf Club team have to say about this race;

1st Pick: LUCKY JINSHA (3)
Proved last start he is a freak doing it a both ends on the turf against a solid class 3 field. Gets back to the preferred surface and looks a massive hope against one of his toughest fields yet.
2nd Pick: KING ARTHUR (1)
Finally meets Lucky Jinsha on the 1200m poly to settle it once and for all. Unfortunately, we were denied this contest weeks ago due to Lucky Jinsha going lame but they are both primed and ready for a big run, bring it on.
3rd Pick: HADEER (2)
Was only a length of Jinsha last start and he is looking well at this stage in the preparation. The distance this weekend is perfect, only knock on him is the surface, yet to win on the poly.
4th Pick: PALETAS (9)
Was well off the leader Lucky Jinsha last start and by the winning post got within 1.8 lengths. Big run considering it was held up at a crucial stage turning for home.

Fortuna Track work – Matamata

Tuesday 29th March

Leaderboard (R Khan) worked at three quarter pace over 1000 metres in 1.15, home in 44.9.

Thursday 31st March

Navalha (O Bosson)  worked at three quarter pace over 1000 metres in 1.12.4, home in 42.6.

Fortuna Track work – Singapore

Saturday 26th  March

King Arthur (Yusoff) – C, 1200/600 38; Olympia (Amirul) – 1000/600 37Hadeer (Amirul) – C, 1000/600 37;

Tuesday 29th March

Hadeer (Jerlyn) – 800/600 36; Kermajack (Jerlyn) – 800/600 37; Sunday (Jamil) – 800/600 38King Arthur (Aslam) – 1000/600 37; Olympia (Ronnie) – 800/600 37; Entertainer (Harry) – 800/600 37

Other News

Changing of the Guard at Te Akau Racing – one Champion Trainer departs, another returns

Yes, the day has come – on Wednesday, the 30th of March Jamie Richards saddled his last three runners for Te Akau in race nine and one of them, the Fortuna syndicated Ragamuffin, got up and one in a race aptly called “Good Luck Hong Kong Bound Jamie Richards”. Jamie’s overall success as the Te Akau Head Trainer in recent years has been well documented, but to narrow it down and look at it from a Fortuna Racing perspective, I have done the stats and they are as follows

From 1 August 2018 to 30th March 2022, Jamie sent out 143 runners for Fortuna and produced 46 winners at a Strike Rate of just 3.11 – quite incredible!!! 

All the very best in your new role in Hong Kong, Jamie.

And now with Jamie’s departure the attention turns to his very worthy replacement, the nine time Champion Trainer (5 in NZ, 4 in Singapore), Mark Walker. Mark’s first day as Head Trainer in his new stint is one of the bigger days on the NZ Racing Calendar, Sires Produce Stakes Day at Awapuni and as you would expect, Te Akau Racing has a “glamour” team in on the day – but, hey, no pressure Mark!!!!

Mark Walker trained his first winner for me (Kapsdan) in September 2003, so we have an association going back almost 20 years and while Mark and I have enjoyed many wins together in Singapore over the past decade or so, there is something really special about Mark’s return to his home country and I am sure he is going to continue to have continuing, ongoing success as he heads up the Training side of the very powerful Te Akau operation with the full support of David and Karyn

Des Coppin’s iconic Melbourne Cup Tour is back!!!

Yes, after a two year hiatus due to Covid, the “oldest teenager in Wellington” is champing at the bit to, once again, lead a big group of Racing Fans to participate in one of the great Carnivals of World Racing

While I have not personally been on one of these tours with Des, I know many who have, including many of our Fortuna clients and all report a fantastic time – see full details below – note there are two tour options, one a five day and one an eight day

Open the Full Tour Brochure with Itinerary and Costings HERE

If you are keen to participate and make a booking Click HERE to see the booking form and if you have any questions call or email the contact details on the brochure

New Innovation – Guest Selector

Yes, this will be a new weekly feature for the Fortuna “Friday Flash” and our Guest Selector is none other than the Editor of the “Original” Friday Flash from 1975 to 1988, Des Coppins – Des has been involved in racing for over 50 years, as a journalist, broadcaster, a current Board Member of the Wellington Racing Club and racing tipster – Des will be providing one or two tips for us each week in his role as our Guest Selector – see below his tip for this week

“ I have an early bird selection that I have a genuine feel for. In the Ricoh Premier (Race 3 at 2pm) on the big group one stage at Awapuni on Saturday, I like Hong Kong. It’s only his 6th start and the four year old gives me the impression that he will develop quickly and be a top rated stayer next season. He ran into a x-factor runner, The Fearless One at Trentham on Oaks Day last time in his first run beyond a mile (2200m) but he hit the line solidly enough to suggest he is spot on for Saturday on his home track. “

Des runs  his very popular phone tipping line (you can access this by calling 0900 45459 – note this incurs a charge of $2.99 per minute) – this is a great service that I have used myself over the years and, amazingly, has been active for over 25 years and covers all NZ gallops from 8am each race day).

3yo Ragamuffin got the job done for Fortuna Racing at Matamata 30th April – our 14th win for 2022 – See story below

RAGAMUFFIN makes it 2 wins in a row with stirring win at Matamata 30th March

The Fortuna 3yo Gelding Ragamuffin (Belardo – Short Tale) produced a stirring winning performance when winning the Rating 65 1400m Event at Matamata yesterday in a fairy tale finish for the Fortuna Racing/Jamie Richards combination – fairy tale because it was the last race in which Jamie Richards runners were competing ahead of his hand over of the Te Akau Racing Stables Head Trainer role to Mark Walkerahead of his departure to Hong Kong and in a race aptly named “Good Luck Hong Kong Bound Jamie Richards”

Ragamuffin had won strongly at the trials in February at Te Rapa, before getting his nose down to beat stable-mate Pisco Sour (I Am Invincible) when resuming in Maiden 1200 metres on 2 March at Hastings. From barrier one, with three-kilo claiming Te Akau apprentice Niranjan Parmar aboard again, Ragamuffin travelled midfield inner from barrier one and produced big late bounds after seizing a rails run in the straight.

On footing that remained Dead5 throughout the ten race programme, Ragamuffin ran 1400 metres in 1:23.6, last 600m in 36.3, and paid $9.60 & $2.60 on NZ TAB tote.

Click HERE to see race replay

Trainer Jamie Richards was a little lost for words post race, but said “That was a great outcome – I had three runners in the race and they were all good chances, but Ragamuffin put his hand up with a strong progressive performance – he has always been a bit immature to date but to come out and win at 1400m backing up from a Maiden win is a really good sign – fantastic as well to get the win for Fohn Galvin and his Fortuna Racing Ownership team – John has been a great supporter of me and the Stable and we have had many successes together.”

“Ragamuffin”“ – Matamata 30th March 2022

Speaking on behalf of the owners, Fortuna Syndications director John Galvin said: “Fortuna has always had a great run at Matamata, and won many races over the years, but today is something really special and you couldn’t have written a better script. Watching the horse parade beforehand, I thought if we could get up and win the last race for Jamie (Richards) as a trainer in New Zealand that it would be very special.

“We’ve had a long association with David Ellis and Te Akau since 2007, when Mark Walker was training here at Matamata. That continued with Mark when Te Akau expanded to Singapore, and more recently with Jamie. Melody Belle came along and, of course, we all know her story of 14 Group 1 wins and dual Horse of the Year.

“It has been fantastic working with Jamie over the years and we are sorry to see him go. He is a young man in a hurry and has a fantastic opportunity to train in Hong Kong, and I’m sure that everyone involved in racing in New Zealand will be right behind him and eager for his success on the global stage.”

Ragamuffin returns to scale – Te Akau Appren tice Parmar Singh aboard

RAGAMUFFIN was acquired by David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna at the 2020 NZ Bloodstock Ready To Run Sale for $80,000, from the draft of Lilywhites Lodge and was bred by Paul Moroney and Catherine Bruggeman

Ragamuffin was strapped by Reece Trumper.