8 Win Saturday - Wairau Cove the Warrior

Date: 26 Feb 2023

8 Win Saturday - Wairau Cove the Warrior


Stakes' placed Wairau Cove (4 g Darci Brahma - Distinctive Lass) delivered his second win on Saturday at Otaki, taking out the $30,000 Cavallo Farm & Chris Rutten Bloodstock Rating 75 1400 metres.

After cutting loose with a five-length Maiden victory over 1200 metres as a three-year-old and subsequently finishing fourth the Wellington Guineas (Gr. 2, 1400m) and second in the Cambridge Breeders' Stakes (Gr. 3, 1200m), it seemed Wairau Cove was on the way to quick success.

Although fourth or better in seven of his nine starts, Wairau Cove has seemed a little stymied by an odd leg injury, but with another victory under his belt may now have turned the corner.

Bred by Greg Tomilson (Nearco Stud), Wairau Cove is raced by him in conjunction with R M & Mrs V Donnison, D J & Mrs S P Rolston, and A C & Mrs J M Seabrook.

Ridden by Michael McNab, who was also aboard when finding the line for fifth off a wide trip in the Rating 75 1400 metres on 11 February at Te Rapa, Wairau Cove worked into a nice spot, fourth, inside the 1000m, and prevailed narrowly after a tough home stretch battle. 

“It was a lovely ride by Michael and I think he's just starting to mature now and really learn what racing's about, so hopefully he has good future,” said trainer Mark Walker. 

On footing Good4 footing, Wairau Cove ran 1400 metres in 1:24.0 and as race favourite returned $2.60 & $1.30 on the NZ TAB tote. 

On course at Otaki, Te Akau racing manager Reece Trumper said: “He's got plenty of ability. Michael (McNab) said he was going to push forward and it worked out well.

“He's probably still a bit keen in the blinkers, but he'll get better each start. 

“He's by a great stallion (Darci Brahma) that raced at Te Akau, from a sensational broodmare that has already left a Group One winner (Kahma Lass) that we trained as well.

“We've got to thank Nearco Stud and all the owners because we've had to wait awhile, things didn't go to plan for us in the spring, so we tipped him out and he's come back a better and stronger horse.”

The year younger brother to former stable-mate and 1000 Guineas (Gr. 1, 1600m) winner Kahma Lass, a subsequent stakes winner at Caulfield, Wairau Cove is from broodmare sensation Distinctive Lass, having left four stakes winners and seven of seven winning progeny. 

An illustrious family which Te Akau principal David Ellis CNZM has great affinity, he purchased Kahma Lass for $290,000 at Karaka 2019 Book 1 Sale, from draft of Curraghmore Stud, and from same draft in 2015 also bought the brother Distinctive Darci. 

A smart four-length trial winner on debut at Te Aroha, Distinctive Darci transferred to Mark Walker in Singapore, winning 10 races, including a Group Two and over NZ$1 million in prize money. Half-brother Kuro (Denman) won five stakes races in a total of eight wins, and Southern Lad (Ocean Park) has won seven in Australia. 

In addition, Ellis also purchased five-time Group One winner and Champion Sire Darci Brahma (Danehill) as a yearling at Karaka, and the mating with Distinctive Lass has worked extraordinarily well. 

“You know when you get given a horse to train with the NS (Nearco Stud) brand on the shoulder that you've got a horse with a good pedigree and we've had a lot of success with the family,” Ellis said.

“It's great that the ownership group have supported us and we're very grateful. He's by Darci Brahma, whose progeny keep improving, and I can see him winning more races.

“Reece (Trumper) and the team have done a great job there with our team at Otaki, and we've really got a tremendous depth of experience and exciting young talent within our staff.

“They're all working so hard and it's really appreciated by Mark, Karyn and I.”

Wairau Cove was strapped by Olivia Hill. 


Photo credit - www.raceimages.co.nz


Sign up to our newsletter