Riccarton Triple Treat - Win No.3 Campionessa

Date: 1 Sep 2022

Riccarton Triple Treat - Win No.3 Campionessa


Ending the day with a stable quinella provided trainer Mark Walker with the best possible outcome on 1 September at Riccarton - contesting three races and delivering three winners.


Following Maiden victories by well-credentialed mares Illicit Miss (Hinchinbrook) and Belle of the Ball (Savabeel), Walker saddled Campionessa (Contributer) and Zouluminous (Zoustar) in the $14,000 Rating 75 1400 metres, with Campionessa(4 m Contributer - Bella Carolina, by O'Reilly) closing strongly to overall her stable-mate.

Both mares had resumed on the poly-track last Thursday at Riccarton, in the Rating 75 1200 metres, with Zouluminous showing plenty of zest for second and Campionessa closing late for fourth.

Content to tail a field of five, jockey Jason Laking tracked Zouluminous, ridden by Joe Kamaruddin, from the 400m and Campionessa stretched out over the concluding stages to win by a half neck margin.

Clocking 1:23.5 for 1400 metres in the race sponsored by Christchurch Casino South Island Racing Awards, 16 September, Campionessa scored her fifth win from 13 starts and paid $2.00 & $1.30 on the NZ TAB tote.

The win continued a great association for Laking and Te Akau, Laking having won the NZ Oaks (Gr. 1, 2400m) aboard stable-mate and tied NZB Filly of the Year Belle En Rouge (Burgundy) in March at Trentham, and he was also aboard Prise De Fer (Savabeel) in the Canterbury Gold Cup (Gr. 3, 2000m) a month later at Riccarton.

Like stable-mate Belle of the Ball (Savabeel), Campionessa also holds a nomination for the Coupland's Bakeries Mile (Gr. 2, 1600m) on 9 November at Riccarton, won last year by stable-mate Markus Aurelius (Ghibellines).

“She's a mare that has continued to get stronger as a five-year-old and it was a really good win,” said trainer Mark Walker, who will remain on hand to oversee proceedings for the turf meeting on Saturday at Riccarton.

“Physically stronger, and eating better, she seems like a horse on the way up and she could be in for a really good season in races up to 2000 metres.”

Twice a winner over 1600 metres, Campionessa ended her previous campaign with consecutive wins before a notable fifth in the Kaimai Stakes (Listed, 2000m) and third in the South Waikato Cup (2000m).

Owned by Te Akau Campionessa Syndicate (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM), she was purchased by David Ellis CNZM for $60,000 at the 2019 Gold Coast National Yearling Sale, from the draft of Mapperley Stud, which stands her sire.

“The team of Hunter Durrant, his partner Katija Cherie, Lydia Truesdale and Jason Laking are doing a wonderful job with the horses at Riccarton, and we'll be sending more down there in the next 10 days," Ellis said.

“I was down there recently inspecting the facilities and the Canterbury Jockey Club is to be commended on the way everything is set up.

“It was good to see Joe (Kamaruddin) ride a couple of winners for us today and he's going to be awarded as the Champion Apprentice Award at the Horse of the Year dinner on Sunday in Hamilton.

“Mark (Walker) is doing an outstanding job with all the horses and team, and not surprising at all how quickly he has developed knowledge of each horse, he's such a training talent.

“Campionessa was a really nice filly when I bought her and she's compiling the record of a good horse.

“I was also thrilled for the owners of Belle of the Ball earlier because they've been very patient, and there are lots of good opportunities down there for mares like her and Illicit Miss.

“The tracks seem to dry out a lot quicker down there than they do in the North, and we're hoping to take advantage of that.”

Walker has gone to the top of the Trainers' Premiership with 14 wins this season, 11 of those coming in the past week.

From the first NZ crop of Contributer (High Chaparral), Campionessa is out of the three-time winning mare Bella Carolina, by O'Reilly (Last Tycoon).

Australian Middle Distance Horse of the Year Contributer (High Chaparral) was a dual Group One winner in the Chipping Norton (Gr. 1, 1600m) and Ranvet Stakes (Gr. 1, 2000m), and Champion Second Season Sire in New Zealand.

His sire, High Chaparral (Sadler's Wells), winner of six Group One races including the English and Irish Derbies, has sired winners of 58 Group One races and already a noted sire of sires.

Her dam Bella Carolina won three times to 1400 metres and sired five individual winners of 15 races, including stakes' winners Tennessee (Per Incanto), who won the Wellesley Stakes (Listed, 1000m), and Leedox (Time Test) in the Futurity Stakes (Listed, 1400m).

In addition, the dam sires in the pedigree of Campionessa are some of the best to ever stand in New Zealand: Champion Sire O'Reilly, and in turn Centaine, and Noble Bijou. While through her sire lines she carries a cross of immortal sire Northern Dancer.

Campionessa was strapped by Katija Cherie.


Photo credit - www.raceimages.co.nz


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