Queenoftheamazon capped off an excellent week on the track when she broke through for her maiden win at Counties on Sunday in a three-year-old 1600 metres at just her third start.
After debuting for 5th at Ruakaka last month she only ran 10th in her 2nd start, but it was a lot better than it looked as she got held up a couple of times and made ground strongly in the straight. She had been on and off the bit in her first two starts, so we let her do her own thing yesterday and she settled last and was still there as the field entered the home straight. When jockey Sam Spratt asked her to quicken the response was instant and she went from last to second in about 10 strides.
She pushed her way through a gap and was strong on the line to win by half a length. A Savabeel filly, she holds a nomination for the New Zealand Oaks and will race next on the 26th of February in a fillies and mares 2100 metres at Waikato. Her performance in this will determine whether we push forward to the Oaks.
Queenoftheamazons win followed hot on the heels of the very promising Mighty Solomon who won the previous day at Otaki in a Rating 65 1200 metres. Unsuited by the shifty track and against older horses he put in a brave run to also come from last and win by a nose, with 8.4 lengths back to the third horse. It was his second win from 5 starts and he is untapped. We are considering a Brisbane campaign for him.
Earlier in the week Mt Difficulty showed that he is on his way back to his best with a dominant win at Banks Peninsula on Monday. He has always had a lot of ability but has had a few issues that we have been dealing with for some time and he seems to be over these now. He had been unlucky at his previous two starts and we were confident of a good run. Settling 2nd last, Kylie Williams got him off the fence at the 600 metres and into clear air. He swept down the outside to win by 2 1/2 lengths, pricking his ears on the line.
He stays in Rating 65 grade and will race this Saturday at Invercargill in a 1200 metre race worth $15,000. A good to dead track will see him very competitive again.