Legarto impresses on debut


New Zealand trainers Ken and could have another star daughter of Proisir on their hands.

Two-year-old filly carries the same colours as her Group One-winning stablemate , and didn't let them down, winning on debut over 1100m by 3.75 lengths at on Wednesday.

“I thought it was a really good run,” Ken Kelso said. “I was quite happy to run third halfway down to get some rating points, but she won by three and a quarter lengths. In that last 50m she got away from them.

“I thought it was quite impressive.”

Already taken by the progeny of Proisir, Kelso went to 's National Yearling Sale last year looking for a filly and was taken by Legarto in Highline Thoroughbreds' Book 2 draft.

“We were looking for another nice Proisir filly at the sales and Phillip (Brown) and myself spied this one. She is a gorgeous filly,” Kelso said.

“She is a lovely filly and we paid NZD$90,000 out of Book 2. She has Levante's owners plus a few other families, and Bev and I have a share in her as well.”

While winning convincingly on a Heavy10 track on Wednesday, Kelso believes his filly is more suited to firmer ground.

“I don't think she is a mudder,” he said. “I am always worried about horses in this sort of ground at this time of year – are they just a mudder? But she has got a big, beautiful action on her.

“Ryan Elliot, who has ridden her at the trials, said she is not just a mudder, and Taiki (Yanagida) said the same thing today.”

The spelling paddock now beckons the promising filly, with plenty of targets on offer in the spring.

“It wasn't our intention to be running her in this sort of ground anyway,” Kelso said. “But through trial cancellations and not getting in the field at , she has been in work for quite some time.

“I think we are inclined to give her a small break now and bring her back for three-year-old races.

“There are some nice three-year-old races in the spring.”

Kelso is now looking forward to the return of his stable star Levante, who is likely to head across the Tasman in the spring following her pleasing fourth placing in the (1200m).

The mare is likely to be aimed at in Melbourne in the spring, with options over both sprint and mile trips.

“She is still spelling at the moment. I went and had a look at her yesterday and she looks amazing,” Kelso said.

“We haven't set a plan for her yet, but she definitely won't be going to .

“To get to Hastings you really have to go to the Foxbridge (Group 2, 1200m) which comes up too early, and she is still out.”

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