A Phenomenal 10-Win 24 Hours
15 May 2022
Te Akau Racing trainers Mark Walker and Donna Logan had a remarkable 24-hour stretch that contained 10 winners.
Starting on Friday at Matamata, where Walker saddled five winners on the home track, before he flew Saturday morning to put the final touches on Entriviere (Tavistock) who was enormous when coming from last for a close third in the $1 million TAB Doomben 10,000 (Gr. 1, 1200m) at Eagle Farm (Brisbane).
In his absence on Saturday, the team had winners at both Rotorua and Hawera, before Logan kicked in with three wins on Saturday afternoon at the Kranji Racecourse in Singapore.
For the Carters (Jomara Bloodstock), beautifully bred Avondalay (3 f Redoute’s Choice – Miss Maren, by Stravinsky) was first cab off the rank and provided the 99thwin this season for leading rider Michael McNab, who clocked 100 on stable-mate Synchronize (Savabeel) on Saturday at Rotorua.
Following an encouraging trial, Hayate (3 f Maurice – Vamoose, by Admire Moon) showed natural ability to win on debut, one of three winners on the card for Te Akau apprentice Joe Kamaruddin.
By leading Australian Three-Year-Old Sire Maurice (Screen Hero), an Arrowfield shuttle stallion who was 2015 Japanese Horse of the Year and both Champion Sprinter and Champion Miler, Hayate was bought for $80,000 by Te Akau principal David Ellis CNZM at the 2021 Karaka Book 1 Sale, from the draft of Mapperley Stud, and owned by Fortuna Hayate Syndicate (Mgr: John Galvin).
Fortuna Racing remained in the spotlight when Te Akau homebred Malborough Bay (2 g Darci Brahma – Spin ‘N Grin, by Spinning World) recorded a debut victory over 1200 metres, ridden by Lisa Allpress.
From a family with which Te Akau has great affinity, Ellis purchased dam Spin ‘N Grin as a yearling at Karaka, and she was trained by Mark Walker to win the Eight Carat Classic (Gr. 2, 1600m), finish third in the Royal Stakes (Gr. 2, 2000m), and be an unlucky second in the New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes (Gr. 1, 1600m), before becoming Joint Third Top Filly in the 2004-05 NZ 3YO Free Handicaps.
Fortuna Racing also had the pleasure of racing Group 1 placed three-quarter sister Burgundy Belle (Burgundy), winner of four races, who is now in foal to exciting young sire Extreme Choice (Not A Single Doubt).
Rounding out a hat-trick for Walker at Matamata, Eridor (3 g Telperion – Fille de France, by Mossman) scored the biggest win on the card when racing clear before easing down with a five and a quarter lengths’ buffer.
From the first crop of beautifully bred young stallion Telperion (Street Cry), out of a mare by former Champion Two-Year-Old Sire and multiple Group One producer Mossman (Success Express), Eridor is bred and owned by Gerry Harvey (Westbury Stud).
Making it five wins on the programme for Te Akau, The Mighty Spar (4 g Savabeel – O’Dianne, by O’Reilly) charged home in the Rating 74 2000 metres, in a performance made all the more sizeable after overcoming checks and virtually being stopped in his tracks at the 500m.
It was the second course win for The Mighty Spar, who powered home to win over 1400 metres as a three-year-old at Matamata, and he now boasts three firsts, seconds, and thirds for the Te Akau 2019 Karaka Breeding Syndicate (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM), after being purchased by David Ellis CNZM from the draft of Waikato Stud, at the 2019 Karaka Book 1 Sale.
Two above-average three-year-old fillies: Pisco Sour (3 f I Am Invincible – Refreshing, by Stratum) and Synchronize (3 f Savabeel – Splits, by O’Reilly) continued the momentum on Saturday.
Carrying the Trelawney Stud colours of owners Brent & Cherry Taylor and Faith Taylor, and impressive clearing Maidens last time out, Pisco Sour stepped up with a tenacious victory in the $30,000 2YO & 3YO 1200 metres at Hawera.
After winning the last race at Matamata, the win by Pisco Sour gave Lisa Allpress a hat-trick with the first two winners on the programme at Hawera.
Synchronize, a beautifully photogenic daughter of Champion Sire Savabeel (Zabeel), displayed her class in no uncertain terms in the 3YO 1400 metres on Saturday at Rotorua, which provided a special moment for rider Michael McNab in reaching a ton this season.
A granddaughter of Joint top filly on the 2005-06 NZ 3YO Free Handicaps Legs (Pins – River Century, by Centaine), who recorded Group One wins in the New Zealand Oaks (2400m) and Kelt Capital Stakes (2040m), Synchronize was purchased by David Ellis CNZM for $280,000 at the 2020 Karaka Book 1 Sale, from the draft of Waikato Stud, and owned by the Te Akau Flexibeel Racing Partnership (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM).
With Mark Walker returning home to take over the reins from Hong Kong bound Jamie Richards, resident trainer Donna Logan joined the Te Akau team, heading up Te Akau Racing in Singapore, and doing a fine job.
During his 11 years in Singapore, Walker was Champion Trainer in 2015, 2017 (record 87 wins), 2019, and 2021 with 66 wins, also was also runner-up three times, as well as third and fourth, adding to his five NZ Premierships.
Already fourth on the Premiership table this season, Logan began Saturday winning with Deception (3 g I Am Invincible – Friday Hussy, by Hussonet), who capped three seconds and thirds with victory for Fortuna Racing, making it five winners from their last nine runners.
Reignite (4 g Sebring – Risk Aversion, by Encosta de Lago), ridden by Champion Jockey Manoel Nunes, gained his fourth win for Te Akau Racing Stable. Originally an $800,000 purchase at the 2019 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, he was later acquired by David Ellis for $80,000 at the 2020 Inglis August Online Sale and syndicated by Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM amongst Te Akau owners.
The 4YO son of Sebring has raced 16 times, recording four wins (including a class record), three seconds and a third placing, earning over $130,000 in stakes thus far.
Concluding celebrations, Diamond Ring (5 g Super Easy – Donna Marie, by Don Eduardo), sporting top mare Scarlet Runner (Kingdom Bay) as his grand-dam, made it three wins on the card for Logan, while stable-mate Our Secret Weapon (4 g Outreach – Poppy’s Pond, by Elvstroem) provided the quinella.
Before the programme was complete, Axel (6 g Darci Brahma – Josephine’s Wish) who is raced by Wealleans Bloodstock and Robin Ratcliffe, almost made it back to back wins after saluting the judge a fortnight ago. Purchased by David Ellis for $55,000 from the NZB Ready to Run Sale specifically to join our Singapore stable, the son of multi-time Singapore Champion Sire Darci Brahma has won six races, been runner up 10 times, and third on eight occasions. With starter incentives, his career prize money is almost $400,000.
“It’s pretty humbling to have celebrated ten winners in such quick succession, but it’s also extremely reassuring for Karyn and me because it proves that everything is on point and everyone is working really well together,” Ellis said.
“The ‘non-winning’ highlight for us had to be Entriviere’s performance in the A$1 million Group 1 Doomben 10,000 at Eagle Farm. Wow what could have been if she hadn’t drawn the widest gate, her final sectionals to run third for Opie Bosson were simply electric. This followed runner up placings last Saturday by Sword of State and Soprano Supreme in the Group 3 Gold Coast Guineas and Gold Coast Cup respectively.
“We’re thrilled for all the owners and all the team, both here at the farm and at the stables in Matamata and Singapore. Hunter Durrant and Katija Cherrie are travelling with our Queensland horses and doing a first-class job. All of our team work so hard and we know how much the wins mean to them. It’s reward for their diligence and hard work.
“For the last six weeks our Middle Barn closed down for renovations and we’ve had 40 horses out of action, so for Mark (Walker) to get five wins on the card at Matamata was quite incredible.
“In six weeks since being on board again he’s had 20 winners, including five stakes’ winners and two of those have been Group One’s.
“Mark was confident the horses would run well, but quite a few drew wide. He’s such a good trainer, proved to be world-class, and they had the fitness to prevail. It’s ended up being a 24-hour period never to forget.
“Adding to that, Karyn was in Christchurch on Friday to support the Windsor Park Stud charity auction for Ellie Stokes, and we successfully bought the Turn Me Loose filly that we wanted for $67,500 and shares in her are selling very fast.”