Tuesday - March 28th
By RON GURNEY
Classic Touch, trained by Lydia Pickford, could not have been more impressive in semi-final work at Awapuni this morning. Fast gallops took place six metres out from the rail on the course proper (slow) and on the plough (good).
Classic Touch used the course proper and had Robert Hannam aboard over 1000m in a smart 1.2 even, the last 600 in 35.7, appearing to have plenty more up the sleeve. The Guillotine mare has competed only four times for two wins and a third and looks a big chance at the Manawatu meeting (r75 1400m) on Saturday. Sires' Produce Stakes entrant Ozil, a debut winner at Wairoa last month, worked with stablemate Heni and covered their last 600m in 35.6, while Tarihira (r75 2100m) and Glengoyne (r65 1550m), two more from the stable of Mike Breslin, were timed 1000m in 1.2.9, the last 600 in 36.9. They are all top prospects for Saturday. Leading Role, in the Manawatu Classic (2000m), had La Monnoye (r65 1550m) for a partner over 1000m, coming the final 800m in 49.9, the last 600 in 36.4, while Five To Midnight (Awapuni Gold Cup) and China Star (r85 1550m) required 49.9 and 36.6. Mighty Solomon (open 1400m) and Henree Winkler (r85 1550m) came up with 50 seconds even and 36.5. Regal Steps (r65 1550m) and Cyclone Tracy did nice work over 1000m in 1.5.8, the last 600 in 36.9, and Sophia Magia, who will have the blinkers removed for Whanganui on Thursday (r65 f&m 1340m), had recent Foxton trial winner Exceptional (by Nadeem) alongside over a quiet 800m in 56.8, the last 600 in 41 even.
On the plough, Awapuni Gold Cup runner Iamishwara sped over 1000m in 1.1.5, coming his final 800m in 48.2, the last 600 in 36.6, which was excellent work. Artemis Rising (by Handsome Ransom), who has not started since August, and unraced Rip Van Winkle two-year-old Lubaya sprinted 600m in 36.8. Savaria, another in the Awapuni Gold Cup, and Hank Moody (r75 2100m) were on terms throughout 1000m in 1.19.2 and came the final 800m in 49.7, the last 600 in 37 even. It was very pleasing work as well. Staywithme covered 1000m in 1.4.7 and finished off with 800m in 50.5, the last 600 in 37.6. Thursday's Whanganui highweight (2040m) rivals and stablemates Just Ishi and Nom Du Beel did a quiet round (1400m) before galloping 800m in 51.2, the last 600 in 37.4. Just Ishi won fresh up at Hawera (r65 mile) three weeks ago. Fibonacci, in at Manawatu (3yo 1200m), worked alone over 1000m in 1.7.1, the last 600 in 38.9. Almo Street, who has not raced since December, and a Darci Brahma gelding warmed up from the 800m (53.8) to run home the last 600 in 38.4, and Whanganui double acceptor Tip The Dancer ended with 600m in 38.9. Last-start Trentham winner Shadows Cast (Manawatu) left 1000m behind in 1.5.9, the last 600 in 39.2. Our Debutante did a quiet round before increasing the tempo on the second circuit to complete 800m in 53.5, the last 600 in 39.1, and Jeff Lynds-trained Upmarket (by Cape Blanco), unplaced on debut earlier this month, clocked 54 even and 39.3. Thats Amore, in at Whanganui (mdn 3yo 1400m), and Waiz One posted 54.2 and 39.9. Last-start Otaki maiden winner Rusty In Melbourne cruised over 800m in 56.2, the last 600 in 39.9, and her stablemate Deedee Panache ran 1000m in 1.10.6, the last 600 in 39.7.
Strada Roccia (by Road To Rock), fourth on debut a few weeks ago, and a Guillotine gelding were kept to 800m in 53.2, the last 600 in 40.3. Strada Roccia is in at Whanganui (mdn 3yo 1400m). Lookherepal was not after time over 800m in 57 even, the last 600 in 41.7, and an unraced Tavistock four-year-old trained by Lucy Tanner took 56.6 and 41.8. That's Funny, who has been freshened up by Lydia Pickford, and a another unraced Tavistock four-year-old sprinted 600m in 42.4, and Rhiannon went 43.7. A Showcasing filly and a Jimmy Choux filly, three-year-olds trained by Lisa Latta, sprinted 600m in 43.6 even, and a Jeff Lynds-trained Stravinsky three-year-old filly, placed at the recent Foxton trials, clocked 43.5. Ringo came up with 43 even, and Shrimp Cocktail (Whanganui) 45.9.