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By Jack Petley | Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Te Akau boss David Ellis told the NZ Racing Desk earlier this week that he is still planning an Australian base for the future for the stable, but nothing has been settled because of the Covid 19 virus. Said Ellis: "We definitely intend to set something up in Australia, but until a bubble between Australia has been confirmed. We are focussed on taking a nice team to Sydney in the autumn and then Brisbane in the winter before we look further down the track."

In the past year the Te Akau stable has tested the Australian scene and has produced super winners in Probabeel, Te Akau Shark and Melody Belle. And looking at the strength of the younger horses in the Matamata yard they will have ample amunition to tackle the Australian scene head on … exciting times ahead for the leading NZ yard.

And what a day they have at Riccarton, five winners and that win by the exciting Cambridge Stud owned filly Kahma Lass gave Te Akau their eleventh Guineas success … 6 in the 2000 Guineas and 5 in the 1000 Guineas. The win also boosted the stables black type wins for the season to 11, nine in NZ and 2 in Aussie.
And said Ellis, the stable has some exciting young gallopers coming through especially the Welcome Stakes winner on the weekend, Avonallo, by the shuttle stallion to Haunui, Belardo. "That wins set him up nicely for the Karaka Million."

Top Kiwi rider Vinny Colgan rode a treble at Tauranga on the weekend and he is right back to his best frorm again after having surgery on a painful neck issue which at times threatened his career. "The pain I was in made riding very tough," said the top rider. “I got to the stage where I wanted to give the riding away. The specialists finally found the problem and after the surgery it is just an amazing feeling."

One of Colgan's winners on the weekend at Tauranga was the James-Wellwood galloper Concert Hall. The three wins took his tally for the season to seven and 1167 for his career including the blue riband NZ Derby six times with Roysyn, Zonda, Hades, Redoute's Dancer, Habibi and Rangipo.

Apprentice Faye Lazet was all smiles after scoring on Aleka Belle (her first winner) for Lisa Latta at Awapuni on Friday. Originally from the Netherlands, Lazet has been ever so keen to make her mark as a jockey in NZ and rated her first winner from some 51 rides as “an amazing feeling."
The young rider first tried her hand in the UK but realised that there were not many opportunities for a lady rider so caste her sights to Down Under. "I heard that either Australia or New Zealand was a good place to be, so I came to New Zealand and rode as an amateur for Ken Duncan for eight months." Then came a short trip back to her homeland and then back to NZ for an apprenticeship with Mike Breslin. She looks to have a bright future and rides light at 49kgs.

The top Gr1 galloper Levendi has been retired and his owners are now looking at a stud career for the $1.7m stakes winner, with three wins at group level, and already there has been interest from stud-farms including interest from New Zealand.

The International Day in Hong Kong is fast approaching and top riders are now settling their mounts for the big day at Sha Tin. One of his named rides for Zac Purton will be the top Singaporean sprinter Inferno, trained by Cliff Brown. The four-year-old has won eight of his nine starts and was a decisive winner of the recent Lion City Cup over 1200 metres. "He was impressive at his last start," said Purton." We are not sure whether he will measure up to the horses in Hong Kong and it looks as though he may strike an easy year."

Purton said he will be on Beauty Generation in the Mile and likely to ride Exultant in the Vase. And he has yet to finalise his HK Cup mount.

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