Spring is an exciting part of the racing calendar and the time when our babies (two-year-olds) start to step out for the first time.
It is a little bit like unwrapping a present – a lot of anticipation and you’re not quite sure what you’ve got until you open the gift. We have unwrapped some good ones in the past, with champion two-year-old Ruud Awakening (pictured)and Stakes Winner and Group 1 placed Prince Mambo two of our stars of juvenile racing in the past few years.
We open our first present this Saturday when Major Ish Choux (Jimmy Choux x Miss Infinnity) becomes our first two-year-old runner of the season, debuting in the $20,000 two-year-old 800 metres at Riccarton. Trained by Andrew Carston who prepared last season’s South Island two-year-old of the year, What Choux Want (also by Jimmy Choux), Major Ish Choux was a $22,000 Select Sale purchase and has shown herself to be a very sensible filly that has progressed naturally since joining Andrew’s stable. Says Andrew, “We haven’t put any pressure on her to get her to this race, she has just kept stepping up and telling us she is ready. I love the progeny of Jimmy Choux and while I expect a nice debut run on Saturday, I think she will only continue to improve with more time on her side”.
Northern Trainer Stephen McKee will have a couple of two-year-olds ready to trial at Ruakaka next Tuesday with a Cape Blanco x Innshelucky filly and a Savabeel x Halloween filly both trialling over 650 metres. Both are just having educational hit outs, but it is an important part of their step towards racing. Stephen Marsh has a further six Go Racing two-year-olds in work and the majority of these will be seen at the jump-outs in the next 2-3 weeks, with some going through to the trials, while Lisa Latta has a Darci Brahma x Snipza Gold filly that is closing in on a trial next month.
Racing Manager Matt Allnutt says it is important to keep an open-mind with young horses and not too push them too hard, too soon. “Our young horses are treated as individuals and we let them naturally tell us what they are ready for. We like to see them do everything on their own accord and as soon as they shown signs of having had enough, we give them some time in the paddock.
Ruud Awakening has set the standard for Go Racing two-year-olds are the hunt for the next one is always exciting!”