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Peacock to belatedly strutt his stuff

3 min read

Written by Paul Vettise

Royalty will parade at Rotorua on Saturday when the injury-plagued Peacock (GB) (Paco Boy {IRE}) makes his New Zealand debut. (Image: racingfotos.com)

The 6-year-old was bred and formerly raced by Her Majesty the Queen and won three of his seven starts in England, including the Listed Fairway S., at Newmarket.

Following Peacock’s runner-up finish in the 2015 G3 Hampton Court S., at Ascot the gelding was purchased by Hong Kong interests before he suffered his first major injury set-back.

The original owners bailed out of the horse and he is now raced by Angel Cruz, wife of leading trainer Derek, and trained at Cambridge by son Martin.

“They bought him for the Derby in Hong Kong and went to Richard Gibson, but when he was put into work he did a tendon.” Martin Cruz.

“They bought him for the Derby in Hong Kong and went to Richard Gibson, but when he was put into work he did a tendon,” Cruz said.

“It took a long time to heal and the owners pulled the pin. When he got to New Zealand it was settling down when he did a tendon in another leg.

“It’s been all start-stop with him so we have had to be very patient and hope all goes well.”

Peacock will make his first start for more than two and a-half years when he steps out in the Listed Jakkalberry Classic over 1950 metres.

“He’s a long distance horse and he’s rated 82 so we may as well put him in an open race and see how he goes.” Martin Cruz.

“He’s a long distance horse and he’s rated 82 so we may as well put him in an open race and see how he goes,” Cruz said.

“We’ll take it race by race with him, but on his very best form he would be competitive.”

Tegan Newman has been booked to ride Peacock, who will carry 53kg.

Peacock is out of Rainbow’s Edge (GB) (Rainbow Quest {USA}), who has left three other winners and the dam is a half-sister to the multiple black type winner Free Agent (GB) (Dr Fong {USA}).

“We really have no expectations so we’ve put an apprentice on to guide him around and we’ll see what happens,” Cruz said.

Peacock

Eagle chasing second Sweynesse

The stable will also have Packing Eagle (NZ) (Pins) defending his title in the G3 Sweynesse S., after also suffering a tendon injury.

“He's slowly building up from that so we'll just be assessing him race by race,” Cruz said.

“It was a small hole and he's strong now. He's coming up well and this is his first run back so we'll just see how he goes.”

Group 1 performer

Packing Eagle won five races in a row in Hong Kong and placed in the G1 Champion's Mile at Sha Tin in 2016 before he was sent to New Zealand.

He was side-lined after finishing runner-up in the G1 BCD Sprint at Te Rapa in February.

A brother to the G2 Angus Armanasco S., winner Shopaholic (NZ), Packing Eagle was originally purchased by Hong Kong trainer Ricky Yui out of Waikato Stud’s draft at Karaka. It is the family of the four-time Group 1 winner Sacred Falls (NZ) (O’Reilly).