Matamata Double - A Joyous Result

Date: 25 Jan 2024

Matamata Double - A Joyous Result

Second on debut, Unbridled Joy (2 c Snitzel – Joy Forever, by High Chaparral) went one better in the $25,000 Entain/NZB Insurance Pearl Series Maiden 2YO 1200 metres on 24 January at Matamata.

After finishing second from a handy spot on the outer to stable-mate When Stars Align (2 c Zoustar – Shenandoah, by Darci Brahma), who contests the $1m TAB Karaka Millions 2YO (Restricted Listed, 1200m) on Saturday at Ellerslie, Unbridled Joy rated a top three chance. 

Ridden by Vinnie Colgan, Unbridled Joy popped out quickly before steadying to sixth, travelled held behind the leading division approaching the home turn, and once across heels 200m out the striking individual let down with big strides to claim victory.

It was a good effort to beat what appeared to be some handy rivals, especially when coming from off the pace in a slowly run event, and Colgan felt the race would serve him well from an educational standpoint.

“I tried to teach him something, by settling in behind them, and he did everything right, so he should have learnt a bit from that,” Colgan said.

“He’s a nice colt, showed plenty of stretch to get them, and got a nice future.”

On Good4 footing, upgraded twice from Soft6, Unbridled Joy ran 1200 metres in 1:12.9, last 600m in 36.1 (approx.), and paid $1.90 to win on the NZ TAB tote. 

“He had to do it the hard way to win, by getting back and then sprinting past them, but he would have learned a lot and long-term that sort of education will be the makings of him,” said co-trainer Mark Walker, who with Sam Bergerson recorded their 99th domestic win this season. 

“Dave (Ellis) bought him at the Gold Coast, from Gerry Harvey’s farm Baramul Stud, who breed good horses year in and year out and they’re a great farm to buy off because we know the horses are well prepared.”

Walker said Unbridled Joy will aim towards the $100,000 Fairview Matamata Slipper (Gr. 3, 1200) contested on Saturday 24 February at Matamata. 

“He’s colt with a good future and Gerry (Harvey) retained a share in him as well, so good for him too, and the staff at the Colt Barn are doing a great job with him.”

Owned by Te Akau 2023 Stallion Breeding Syndicate (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM), which includes very impressive debut winner Move To Strike (2 c I Am Invincible – No Evidence Needed, by Shamardal), Unbridled Joy was purchased by David Ellis CNZM at the 2023 Gold Coast Yearling Sale. 

By the most dominant Australian sire in recent times, Snitzel (Redoute’s Choice) is one of three in the trilogy of breed shaping champion stallions in Australia, along with Danehill (Danzig), and Redoute’s Choice (Danehill).

The colt carries a Danzig and Northern Dancer cross and also that of speed influence Bletchingly, from a prolific winning family on the dam-side, including triple Group One winner Bentley Biscuit (Peintre Celebre) and Stradbroke (Gr. 1, 1400m) winner Thorn Park (Spinning World). 

Dam Joy Forever is a by a sire, High Chaparral (Sadler’s Wells), that is proving a revelation in every sense. He made an incredible impact when first shuttling to Windsor Park Stud in New Zealand, did the same in Australia, and now a sire of sires and proven broodmare sire.

At the time of purchase, Ellis said: “He’s typical of the best Snitzel colts when it comes to type, balance, and power. 

“He’s a fluid mover, has natural substance, and enormous presence.

“He has a great female family, by terrific dam sires, and goes back to the top racehorse and sire Thorn Park.”

Unbridled Joy was strapped by Rylee Sheehan. 

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