NZ Briefs for 08th June 2018

2YO ready to attack at Te Rapa; Rain may force Kiwi mare out; Riccarton on the radar; Bright future tipped for Jamie; Deep ground Zartan’s preference; Hong Kong-based stars on the move
2YO ready to attack at Te Rapa
Last-start winner Cyber Attack is ready to step out over more ground at Te Rapa on Saturday in the Listed Ssanyong Auckland Futurity Stakes (1400m).
“He’s been working well and the 7 f will really suit him – he’s a genuine chance,” trainer Tony Pike said.
By Shamexpress out of a half-sister to the multiple Group One winner Humidor, Cyber Attack was a fresh-up winner over 5 3⁄4 f at Te Awamutu last month.
Pike will also take covers off the former Hong Kong galloper Magical Beauty when he makes his New Zealand debut in the Lee Somervell Racing Stables 6 f.
“He trialled well at Taupo behind Sacred Rebel and his work has been great,” Pike said. “He’s a happy, laid-back horse who’s enjoying it here - I wouldn’t say he couldn’t win.”
Magical Beauty won four races up to a mile in Hong Kong where he was trained by Tony Cruz.
Meanwhile, Listed Zacinto Stakes (1600m) winner and Gr.1 New Zealand 2000 Guineas (1600m) placegetter Ever Loyal is spelling after sustaining a minor injury and is being set for a return later this year.
“He had just a small suspensory injury and he is recuperating at Maara Grange and is likely to come back into work probably heading into the spring,” Pike said.
Rain may force Kiwi mare out
Doubt has been cast on New Zealand mare Shillelagh taking her place in Saturday’s Gr.1 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) at Doomben.
“She probably won’t run if the track is wet, which it looks like it will and go to the Tatts Tiara instead,” said Paul Shailer, who runs trainer Chris Waller’s Queensland operation.
Bred and raced by Hunterville couple Christopher and Susanna Grace, Shillelagh finished fourth last time out when resuming in the Gr.3 Glenlogan Park Stakes (1350m).
Riccarton on the radar
A trip to Riccarton could be on the cards for the talented Wooden Edge, who resumes in the Lee Somervell Racing Stables 1200 at Te Rapa on Saturday.
A winner of six of his 18 starts, Wooden Edge ran an eye-catching third at the Cambridge trials last month behind race rival No Need, trained by race sponsor Somervell.
“His trial was very good, but we've tried to get him to the races twice before this, only to have the meetings abandoned so hopefully it's third time lucky this weekend,” trainer Chris Wood said.
The Gr.3 eStar Winter Cup (1600m) at Riccarton on August 4 appealed as a suitable winter target for Wooden Edge if his form warranted
Bright future tipped for Jamie
Michael Pitman has black type expectations of Jamie, his three-year-old son of Highly Recommended.
The Riccarton horseman and his training partner son Matthew produced the gelding for an easy last-start maiden success on his home track at his second race day appearance.
“He’s a very smart horse and has always shown us plenty at home,” Pitman said. “I think he’ll develop into a Group horse.”
Jamie will now be put aside before targeting next season’s Hawke’s Bay carnival.
Deep ground Zartan’s preference
Heavy track specialist Zartan is getting closer to a show of form.
The eight-year-old son of Zed, who was unplaced last time out, will further his preparation in the Platinum Homes Handicap (2100m) at Trentham on Saturday.
“He’ll probably need another run before he’s competitive,” trainer Kylie Little said. “He’s just waiting for the deeper tracks.”
The eight-year-old is an accomplished winter performer with eight wins on rain-affected ground and also has black type on his record, having finished runner-up in the Listed Wanganui Cup (2040m).
Hong Kong-based stars on the move
Tommy Berry and Joao Moreira have announced they will be leaving Hong Kong at the end of the current season.
The former is returning home to Australia to his Sydney base while Brazilian Moreira is keen to further his career in Japan.
Berry said he was returning home for family reasons and the opportunity to ride more often.
“It has been a great experience and we have been very well looked after by the Hong Kong Jockey Club, but we feel home is the best place for our family at this stage of our lives.”
Moreira, who currently holds a one-win lead over Zac Purton in a bid to land another jockeys’ premiership, has settled on Japan as his next port of call.
“When I came here I honestly thought I would be here for no more than two years, and I never expected to achieve what I have,” Moreira told the South China Morning Post.
“I've experienced everything you can dream of as a jockey here and I've made some wonderful friends.”

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