NZ Briefs for 12th February 2018

Matamata return for Ugo Foscolo; Oaks hope overcomes heavy track; Tavistock 4YO in hot form
Matamata return for Ugo Foscolo
Group One winner Ugo Foscolo will be back on track on Saturday week.
“He was going to trial at Matamata tomorrow, but they’ve been cancelled, so he’ll go straight to the open 6 f on Matamata Cup day,” trainer Stephen Marsh said. “He looks great and it’s great to have him back.”
Marsh prepared Ugo Foscolo to win five of his first six starts, including the Gr.1 New Zealand 2000 Guineas (1600m), before the son of Zacinto transferred to the Sydney stable of Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott.
Muscle soreness restricted him to just one unplaced run before he returned home.
Oaks hope overcomes heavy track
Sparingly-raced filly Gold Spice overcame testing conditions at Pukekohe to remain in Group One contention.
The daughter of Rock ‘N’ Pop opened her winning account on Sunday at her third appearance with black type racing now confirmed for her immediate future.
Trainers Graeme Richardson and Gavin Parker were unsure of her chances on a heavy track, but were forced to start with bigger prizes in mind.
“We really like this filly and she’s on a path to the New Zealand Oaks so we had to run her,” Parker said.
“She was floundering and slipping, but she’s got a bit of class. We’ll possibly look at the Sunline Vase on Derby Day at Ellerslie and that will give her two weeks into Wellington.”
Tavistock 4YO in hot form
Tannhauser’s latest Singapore success has confirmed turf plans for the New Zealand-bred.
The Tavistock four-year-old’s previous four wins had all been on the all-weather track at Kranji before Sunday night’s dynamic victory over 6 f on the grass course.
“We’re looking at the Rocket Man Sprint for him, but he needs to run at least twice over turf,” trainer Michael Clements said.“The Sprint Series will be his main goal.”
Tannhauser was ridden by Vlad Duric, who has been aboard the gelding in all his starts.
“He’s a very exciting horse and has a very good engine,” he said. “He is progressing the right way, he will be in for some hot competition going up against better horses soon, but he deserves to have a crack.”

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