Two very promising three-year-old’s vie for the Group 2 $100,000 Valachi Downs Championship Stakes at Ellerslie on Saturday.
Hasabro has been on a trajectory since his impressive maiden win at Tauranga on 23 March.
Says Albert Bosma, Go Racing principal, “He played ‘bridesmaid’ on three occasions prior to notching up his first win so it was well deserved and, given our opinion of the horse, felt like a long time coming.”
“He stepped up a grade to compete at Te Aroha in a $22,500 rating 65 1600 metres this month and was unlucky to be relegated to third place after a protest. He ran second and was nose from the winner. It was a good performance and showed us he is ready for the step up in class and distance on Saturday.” If he runs well, he’s another horse from the McKee-Go Racing team who could be looking at an Australian campaign although he’ll have to over come a wide barrier draw of 13.
“We have just sent Maktoum over and depending on how Hasabro runs on Saturday we could look at either the South Australian or Queensland Derby. He stays, is on the way up, and is a good traveller having been to Melbourne in the spring.” Stephen McKee has had great success in Australia with Consensus of late winning the Group 2 Sunline Stakes in Melbourne and Maktoum running a bottler of a race for 2nd in his first Australian start at Warwick Farm on Wednesday.
Talented filly Decadence also lines up on Saturday. She broke her maiden status last month and backed that up with a super effort at Awapuni in the $70,000 Group 3 Manawatu Classic with a fast finishing fifth.
“Ultimately it was her wide barrier draw that cost her a top 3 finish and she’ll have the same issue on Saturday having drawn 16. She showed us she is more than capable of competing at that level over ground. This is just her first campaign, but if she was to win, we would have to consider a hit and run mission on a race like the South Australian Oaks. More than likely she will go for a spell, but we’ll see how she goes on Saturday and will be guided by her. She’s a super little girl and she’ll keep.”
“Sweet Orange is not a well-known sire but he was a very good racehorse in Hong Kong and was favourite for their Derby in the lead-up to the race. We just loved her as a type and had to have her. That’s starting to pay dividends now.”