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Expensive filly takes thick end of stake

3 min read

Written by Paul Vettise

Emirates Park hasn’t had to wait long to reap a reward on a major investment.

Principal Nasser Lootah went to $750,000 to secure Espaaniyah (I Am Invincible) at the Inglis Easter Sale and that looked money well spent when the filly sped to an authoritative debut victory at Moonee Valley on Saturday.

She was quickly into stride to lead from a handy gate and the more rider Tim Clark asked of her in the straight the more she gave to comfortably keep the challenge of Biscara (Rubick) at bay.

“She’s a really nice filly and it was a professional performance.” - Adrian Bott

“She’s a really nice filly and it was a professional performance,” said Adrian Bott, who trains with Gai Waterhouse.

“She’s gone ahead in leaps and bounds since she’s been down here and there’s a lot more in store for her.”

Clark was equally effusive about the future of Espaaniyah, who is from the family of the Group 3 winner and Group 1 performer Aichi ( Strategic).

“I’ve had a bit to do with her at home and I was keen to come down and ride her.” – Tim Clark

“I’ve had a bit to do with her at home and I was keen to come down and ride her,” he said. “I think she’s pretty smart.”

Espaaniyah was a $750,000 yearling purchase

While her task was made somewhat easier when True Serendipity (Toronado {IRE}) ran off on the turn and took half the field with her, Espaaniyah ran straight and true and never looked like being headed.

Meanwhile at Trentham, the covers came off the highly-regarded Exuberant (NZ) (Savabeel) and he didn’t let the side down with victory in the Listed Hanley Formula Wellesley S.

“To do that at his first start in a Listed race shows he’s a pretty classy animal.” – Todd Pollard

“To do that at his first start in a Listed race shows he’s a pretty classy animal,” trainer Stephen Marsh’s racing manager Todd Pollard said.

"He’s a lovely looking 2-year-old, not overly big, but he’s a beautiful horse.”

Bred and sold by Waikato Stud, Exuberant was a NZ$160,000 Karaka purchase for Go Racing whose principal Albert Bosma was celebrating from afar. He is currently in England to source staying prospects at the Tattersalls Horse in Training Sale, which opens on Monday.

Bavella shines

At Ellerslie, the blue-blooded filly Bavella NZ) (Zoustar) raced accordingly and made best use of an inside gate to sit outside the leader before dashing clear in the straight to win the Partners Life Juvenile.

Bred and raced by Cambridge Stud principals Brendan and Jo Lindsay, the Lance Noble-trained youngster is a daughter of the G3 Ladies’ Day Vase winner Zonza (NZ) (Zabeel {NZ}).

“Obviously, the barrier draw played a big part and she’s been pretty professional all the way through,” Noble said.

“With 2-year-olds it’s a bit day to day when they’re still growing.” – Lance Noble

“With 2-year-olds it’s a bit day to day when they’re still growing. There is a nice race for her at Pukekohe in a month – she’ll tell us if we go there.”

Miss Federer (NZ) (Swiss Ace) was able to turn the tables on Challa (Dissident) at Riccarton in the New Zealand Bloodstock Pearl Series Race.

The latter had finished ahead in their first meeting when both placed behind Challa’s stablemate Puysegur (Fastnet Rock), but it was Miss Federer who asserted her dominance this time around.

She is trained by Andrew Carston, who bought the sister to stakes performer Starlight Angel out of Bradbury Park’s draft at Karaka for NZ$10,000.