Midweek Winning Double - Win No.1 Hero Worship

Date: 7 Sep 2022

Midweek Winning Double - Win No.1 Hero Worship


In a much deserved success, Hero Worship (4 g Xtravagant - Idol, by Fastnet Rock) scored a commanding victory in the $14,000 John Tucker Maiden 1200 metres on Life Members' Race Day, 7 September, at Matamata.

After two seconds among four starts last season, Hero Worship sustained a strong gallop to win a trial on Heavy10 going at Avondale on 16 August. However he was unable to quicken on the Heavy10 when resuming in the Maiden 1050 metres on 28 August at Matamata.

On footing that withstood heavy rain earlier in the week, but recovered to rate Heavy8, Hero Worship was easy through the initial stages behind a competitive pace, was five lengths off at the 600m, but improved to lead on straightening and raced clear in the centre of the track to score by two and three-quarter lengths.

The strong and compact Hero Worship was ridden Troy Harris, who celebrated his 50thwinner with trainer Mark Walker.

Also in the race, stable-mate and race favourite Espionage (Savabeel) came from second last with a strong finish between runners for second.

Hero Worship clocked 1:14.2, last 600m in 37.4, for 1200 metres, returning $4.90 & $1.80 on the NZ TAB tote.

“We took the blinkers off, he settled a lot better and showed a good turn of foot,” Walker said. “He was going a bit keenly with blinkers on, so that might have helped him and he might win more races being ridden that way.”

Walker also praised the Matamata Racing Club curator Graeme Styles for picking up the meeting at late notice from Avondale, and doing a fantastic job with the facilities.

Owned by Te Akau Hero Worship Racing Partnership (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM), he was purchased by David Ellis CNZM for $220,000 at the 2020 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, from the draft of Newhaven Park, NSW.

Ellis also purchased his sire, Xtravagant (Pentire), as a yearling at Karaka, who became a breathtaking winner of the 2000 Guineas (Gr. 1, 1600m). He stands alongside Cool Aza Beel (Savabeel), another Group One winner bought by Ellis, at Newhaven Park.

Commencing stud duties in 2017, Xtravagant has already left 32 winners of 64 races, including five stakes' winners, and, standing at $25,000, has a full book for the breeding season.

“It was an exciting win by Hero Worship and it's always a special thrill to win a race with a stallion that we bought as a yearling and trained to win two Group One races,” Ellis said.

“He's doing a really good job at stud, has a great pedigree and was a sensational racehorse.

“Hero Worship was a strong colt when we bought him, from the first crop by Xtravagant, and being from a mare that won over 1500 metres in Australia, it looks like he could be successful up in trip.”

Hero Worship was strapped by Tamweer Alam.

Photo credit - www.raceimages.co.nz


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