The Pukekohe Veterinary Centre 1400m at Ellerslie proved to be a happy hunting ground for Trelawney Stud graduates with Saavoya (Savabeel x Royal Prize) and Endorsement (Nadeem x Mistrale) providing the farm with a quinella.
Quality racemare Saavoya returned to the winner’s circle for the first time since her three-year-old days for Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, hitting the front going into the straight and winning by one and a quarter lengths over the small field of five.
Saavoya as yearling
Saavoya 09.01.2016 (Trish Dunell)
It was the now four-year-old mare’s third appearance after a lengthy break following a three-year-old campaign that saw her post a Group Two double with victories in both the Eight Carat Classic and Royal Stakes at Ellerslie.
Several niggling issues had seen her return to the race track this season delayed until November last year with her races in this preparation carefully spaced as she returned to full fitness.
“She had a big season as a three-year-old so we were always going to give her plenty of time before we brought her back for this campaign,” noted co-trainer Andrew Forsman.
“She has had a couple of setbacks along the way so we just took it quietly as we looked to bring her back to her peak. She is still a wee way off her best but it was good to see her show plenty of fight on Saturday and get the win.”
Forsman is now keen to see the mare step up in distance as he and co-trainer Murray Baker plot a course for her over the next few months.
“She drew away nicely on Saturday over the 1400 metres which suggests she is looking for a mile or more now,” he said.
“We think she is probably at her best at a mile so there are some nice options for her over the next couple of months. We may back her up at Tauranga his weekend and then look to some black-type options after that.
“She is already a valuable mare as a dual Group Two winner however further stakes wins as an older mare can only enhance that value.
“A Group One win would be the ultimate so a race like the New Zealand Breeders’ Stakes at Te Aroha is definitely on the radar.”
Saavoya was a $22,000 purchase from Trelawney's 2013 NZB Select draft.
Endorsement was purchased by trainer Bruce Wallace from Trelawney's 2010 NZB Premier draft for $70,000. This was his first start this campaign following a run of good form in the middle of last year ending with a win at Ruakaka.