Group 1 winner Volpe Veloce will have the opportunity to continue an impressive streak when she lines-up in the Group 2 Theo Marks Stakes (1300m) at Rosehill on Saturday. “She has won a stakes race at the age of two, three, four, and five, I hope she can do it at six as well,” trainer Graham Richardson said.
The daughter of Foxwedge will head into Saturday’s race fresh-up after just one trial in New Zealand and Richardson is pleased he made the decision to send the mare over to Australia nearly three weeks ago. “She is going well. I sent her over a little bit early just to get her acclimatised to the Sydney weather,” he said. “She is turning in her coat, but she will definitely improve in her coat once she has had this run. “She is pretty forward, she had that trial in New Zealand, she worked up well on Saturday and on Tuesday morning and just did pace work this (Thursday) morning.”
Richardson was delighted with her 1100m trial at Taupo last month, where she finished runner-up to More Wonder, and he is looking forward to lining up his stable star on Saturday. “It was an extremely good trial,” he said. “She is just a little bit stronger. She has still got the tough attitude and is getting better. “They are good horses (she will face on Saturday) and are world-class, so it’s going to be interesting.”
Volpe Veloce will jump from barrier four with Andrew Adkins aboard. “I can’t draw that well in New Zealand, I am chuffed to draw it over here,” Richardson said. All going well after Saturday Volpe Veloce will return to Rosehill later this month for the Group 2 Golden Pendant (1400m) before her connections decide on further targets. “We have decided that she will go to these two and then we will sort out another programme after that,” said Richardson.
Back across the Tasman, Richardson will contest the Northern Districts Security Ruakaka Cup (2200m) with Suliman. The six-year-old son of Redwood is in fine form of late winning at Te Rapa in July before finishing runner-up over 2100m at the same track last month.
Richardson is pleased with Suliman and is eyeing a potential Group 3 Christchurch Casino New Cup (3200m) path for the gelding. “He has worked up well,” he said. “Ruakaka is a difficult track for horses having their first start there, but he is a go forward horse and hasn’t got a lot of weight (54kg) on his back. “It’s a small but handy field, but he is well enough. “We’ll see how he goes on Saturday and then we will start looking towards the South Island.”