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NZ Briefs for 04th October 2018

Marsh looking for improvement; Kiwi import on trial for Weir; Racing set to resume at Otaki;
Marsh looking for improvement
Cambridge trainer Stephen Marsh will be hoping that Ugo Foscolo can recapture his black-type form in the Gr.3 Red Badge Sprint (1400m) at Hastings on Saturday.
The Group One-winning son of Zacinto ran third fresh-up over 6 f at Ruakaka last month before winning an 5 1⁄2 f trial at Te Rapa and Marsh is hopeful of a solid performance from the five-year-old.
“We gave him a good hit-out at the trials,” Marsh said.
“Unfortunately he’s drawn out wide (barrier but he’s going to go forward, that’s his racing pattern.
“He’s going to go in fit and ready, so we are hoping he can show his best there.”

Kiwi import on trial for Weir
Champion Victorian trainer Darren Weir has little expectation of recent stable addition Verry Elleegant.
The winner of two of her three starts in New Zealand for trainer Nick Bishara, Weir is pleased with the daughter of Zed and is hoping to get a guide as to where she is at when she tackles the Gr.2 Edward Manifold Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday.
“She looks a nice stayer,” Weir said.
“We recently purchased her from New Zealand and the previous owners stayed in which is terrific.
“She came over and there’s not a lot of her, but she has got a great action and she is doing really well in the feed bin, which is the important thing.
“She has probably got off the plane very tucked-up so we have been able to work her, but not hard.
“We’re not going there with any expectations on Saturday other than to have a look at her and see where she fits but to me she looks a really good stayer for the future.”
Weir was drawn to the filly, who holds a nomination for the Gr.1 VRC Oaks (2500m), by the way in which she closed-off in her victories at Ruakaka and at Matamata.
“The owners were backing their product and were more than happy to stay so that is a big plus from our perspective.”
Verry Elleegant has drawn well in gate two in the 16-horse field and will be ridden by John Allen.
Racing set to resume at Otaki
Racing is set to resume at the Otaki racecourse on October 22 after it withstood a track test on Wednesday where 18 horses worked on the renovated track over a variety of distances from the inside rail.
“The track looked a picture and performed in accordance with its appearance,” stipendiary steward Neil Goodwin said. “The surface was very consistent the whole way around the course.”

Several riders, including Rosie Myers, Buddy Lammas and Zinjite Moki, also expressed their approval.

There has been no racing at Otaki since early February and a drainage project has since been completed, in addition to the annual track renovation programme.

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