Firriato Flies Home

Date: 27 Oct 2023

Firriato Flies Home


Given a plum ride by Opie Bosson, Firriato (4 m Almanzor – Deliciano, by Darci Brahma) resumed with victory in the $18,500 Entain – NZB Insurance Pearl Series Maiden Fillies & Mares 1400 metres (eligible $20,000 bonus) on 26 October at Rotorua.


Having raced well during her first campaign, Firriato won both preparatory trials, most recently on 10 October at Matamata, and started a ready-made favourite.

Ideally drawn in barrier two, she began well before securing the trail and quickened to a winning advantage in the straight after receiving a saloon passage near the rail.

“She did everything right and relaxed nicely,” said Bosson, who rode three winners at the meeting.

On footing that remained Heavy8, Firriato ran 1400 metres in 1:27.5, last 600m in 37.2, and paid $2.50 & $1.30 on the NZ TAB.

“It was a really good win today and she’s just developed with more time, like a lot of the progeny by Almanzor,” said co-trainer Mark Walker. “We love the stallion and think he has a great future.

“Sir Peter (Vela) has allowed us to take our time with this mare and we think that she’ll be much better once we, eventually, get her over more ground.”

Owned and bred by Sir Peter Vela (Pencarrow Stud), her dam Deliciano (Darci Brahma) won six races from 1800m – 2100m, finishing second in the Metropolitan Trophy (Listed, 2500m), while grand-dam Santagostino (Giant’s Causeway) was an impressive winner of four races to 2100 metres including the Great Northern Guineas (Gr. 2, 2100m) and Gold Cost Bracelet (Listed, 1800m).

It was the second win in a week for progeny of Deliciano, after Major Major (Pins) won by seven lengths over 2100 metres on 18 October at Tauranga.

Quite famously, third dam Devil’s Lair (Sir Tristram) left Vapour Trail (Jetball), who was won in a Ruakaka Racecourse raffle by commentator Bruce Sherwin, trained locally by Donna Logan, and won the New Zealand Oaks (Gr. 1, 2400m), Sir Tristram Fillies Classic (Gr. 2, 2000m), and Eight Carat Classic (Gr. 2, 1600m), on her way to becoming New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year in 2002. 

Te Akau Racing Manager Reece Trumper said a decision to start was made in conjunction with Pencarrow racing manager Garry Cossey and left until just before closing time (7:30 a.m.).

“That was an excellent result to win fresh-up after she showed promise last season,” Cossey said. 

“She’s bred to stay, so was a chance of doing the job once more matured and Opie (Bosson) said she’d really strengthened up this time in.

“Winning a Pearl Series Bonus ($20,000) made the win even sweeter and Peter (Vela) is rapt with the result. 

“It was a good call by the (Te Akau) team to start her because we’re always wary of running horses fresh-up on wet ground, but they did their homework and it proved right, so we are very thankful to them.

“They talked to people at the track about the surface and Peter was happy to run if they were pretty comfortable. It made all the difference and it was good work by them.

“Genetically, she’s bred to stay all day and being by Almanzor (Wootton Bassett) there’s every chance that, hopefully, she’ll develop into a nice staying mare in time.”

Firriato was strapped by Stephanie Hyde-Richards.


Photo credit -


Sign up to our newsletter