Exhibition Excellence

Date: 14 Aug 2023

Exhibition Excellence


Te Akau training partners Mark Walker and Sam Bergerson took the opportunity to gallop Group and stakes' performed horses between races on Saturday at Te Rapa.


Galloping in pairs over 1000 metres, Brando (Savabeel) with Vinnie Colgan aboard and Trobriand (Kermadec) (main picture above) under Warren Kennedy were followed at an interval by Skew Wiff (Savabeel) and Opie Bosson and Maven Belle (Burgundy) ridden by Sam Weatherley (below).

Splitting Group One winners Pier (Proisir) and Legarto (Proisir) when finishing second in a trial on 1 August at Te Rapa, Trobriand is preparing to resume in the $100,000 Cambridge Stud Northland Breeders’ Stakes (Gr. 3, 1200m) next Saturday (19 August) at Ruakaka.

Brando and Skew Wiff will resume in the $150,000 Waikato Stud Foxbridge Plate (Gr. 2, 1200m) on Saturday 26 August at Te Rapa, while Maven Belle will be given a bit more time before commencing.

“Both pairings ran home in 35.5 (600m) and overall we were pleased with the way they worked,” said Te Akau racing manager Reece Trumper.

“I think a wet track on Foxbridge Plate day will bring Brando into it more. I don’t think he’s quite as sharp to run 1200 metres on a good track, given he’s won over 2000 metres, and probably looking for a bit more ground now.

“Michael McNab is going to ride Brando in the Foxbridge and Opie will team up with Skew Wiff.

“Trobriand is flying and we’ve been really happy with his work, ahead of next Saturday. 

“Maven Belle is a bit woolly, holding on to her winter coat and not properly thriving yet, so we’ll just bide our time with her until she comes in the coat.



“Skew Wiff has come back an absolute machine and really strengthened up, too. She’s not big, but she is strong, and Opie combines with her really well.”

A dual stakes' winner in the Japan Trophy (Gr. 2, 1600m) and Awapuni Gold Cup (Gr. 2, 2000m) before ending his previous campaign in April, Brando (6 g Savabeel – Saoirse, by Iffraaj) has won nine races for the Te Akau R2R Colt Breeding Syndicate, having been bred by Fairdale Stud and purchased by David Ellis CNZM at the 2019 New Zealand Bloodstock Ready to Run, from the draft of Riversley Park.

Bred by David Ellis CNZM, Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM, and Mark Walker, and owned by the Te Akau Maven Belle Racing Partnership (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis), Champion Two-Year-Old Maven Belle (4 m Burgundy – Doyenne, by Kilimanjaro) made it consecutive wins as a three-year-old in the Almanzor Trophy (Gr. 3, 1200m), and is gearing up to race again after a first and second, respectively, at the trials.

An impressive trial winner on 1 August at Te Rapa, and bred and owned by Foxbridge Plate sponsor Waikato Stud, Skew Wiff (4 m Savabeel – Starvoia, by Starcraft) ended her previous campaign in April after finishing runner-up to stable-mate Romancing The Moon (El Roca) in the Levin Classic (Gr. 1, 1600m) and was second again in the NZ Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes (Gr. 1, 1600m) in a top effort against the older mares.

Unbeaten in three starts when winning the Eclipse Stakes (Gr. 2, 1200m) and subsequently third to stable-mate Tokyo Tycoon (Satono Aladdin) in the $1m Karaka Million 2YO (Restricted Listed, 1200m), Trobriand (3 c Kermadec – Arboreal, by Lonhro) was purchased as a yearling by David Ellis CNZM for $260,000 at the 2022 Karaka Book 1 Sale, from the draft of Windsor Park Stud, and is owned by the Te Akau Island Paradise Racing Partnership (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM). 


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