Skew Wiff on Group 1 Path

Date: 1 Feb 2024

Skew Wiff on Group 1 Path

NZ Racing News reports:

Group One-winning mare Skew Wiff (NZ) (Savabeel) will be vying for more topline honours this preparation for Te Akau Racing.

The Waikato Stud-bred and raced daughter of Savabeel was runner-up in the Gr.1 Levin Classic (1600m) and Gr.1 New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes (1600m) as a three-year-old last season, before breaking through to claim her first elite-level scalp in the Gr.1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m) at Hastings in September.

Skew Wiff then flew across the Tasman to join trainer Mark Walker’s Cranbourne barn where she won the Gr.3 The Hong Kong Jockey Club Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on Melbourne Cup Day.

The four-year-old had her first trial of her preparation on the new Caulfield Heath track on Monday morning, finishing fifth in her 1000m heat in the hands of Blake Shinn.

“She did all she needed to do,” Te Akau Racing assistant trainer Ben Gleeson told

“She stepped a little bit slow away, but she quickly mustered and sat in behind them. We asked Blake not to give her a solid one as she’ll go two weeks now to her next one, where she will be asked to do a little bit more.

“Blake said she was building through the line nicely and did everything she needed to do.”

Skew Wiff is set be tested at Group One level first-up when she tackles the Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield on February 24.

 “We think she’s a good chance in an Oakleigh Plate depending on what weight she gets, so once she has a second one, she will be cherry ripe for a first-up assignment,” Gleeson said.

Skew Wiff has also spent time with renowned horse handler Julien Welsh, which the stable is confident will quieten her down on raceday, particularly in the barriers.

“We are very confident we are on top of that and she had a barrier session last week,” Gleeson said. “She now has a barrier blanket, which keeps her completely settled and (a) happy horse to go into the stalls.

“We tend to have a session every now and then where we stand her in the barriers where she doesn’t move for 45 minutes, and it really helps with her attitude towards the gates and in the gates.”


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