NZ Briefs for 30th July 2020

Melbourne campaign for Santa Catarina; Mohaather makes amends in Sussex Stakes; New editor at the helm of RaceForm

Melbourne campaign for Santa Catarina

Stakes winner Santa Catarina has joined the Melbourne stable of Mike Moroney and will have her first hit-out of the new season at Moonee Valley on Saturday.

Raced by prominent New Zealand owner Lib Petagna, Santa Catarina was previously trained in New Zealand by Stephen Marsh for whom she won five of her 17 career starts, including the Listed Waikato Equine Veterinary Centre 2YO Stakes (1100m) at Te Rapa.

Moroney said the mare had joined his Flemington team about three weeks ago, shortly after she finished fourth in a 5 f race at Te Rapa first-up from a spell early this month.

"Lib Petagna and I race quite a few horses together," Moroney said.

"I trained his first Group One winner for him, a mare called Clean Sweep and he had a share in Tivaci and Alabama Express, so I've always trained for him.

"He wants to send her over here and possibly go to (stallion) Alabama Express so for that reason she came to Melbourne.

"But they were open to how she is racing.

"She could go to stud this year or she could race It just depends on what sort of form she's in in her next couple of runs."

Moroney's biggest concern heading into her 6 f contest on Saturday is the rising five-year-old's outside barrier in the 11 horse field of the

"She's had one run back where she got back on a heavy track and ran home and then she came over here," Moroney said.

"She seems good. The pieces of work we've done with her she has worked well and she seems to have settled in well.

"But it's just a disappointing barrier draw."

Mohaather makes amends in Sussex Stakes

Showcasing colt Mohaather demonstrated a devastating turn of foot to win the Gr.1 Sussex Stakes (1600m), the feature event on day two at Goodwood.

Trained by Marcus Tregoning and ridden by Jim Crowley, the four-year-old endured a luckless run in the Gr.1 Queen Anne Stakes (1600m) at Royal Ascot - but righted the record as an impressive victor on the Downs.

Crowley had to switch out to make his challenge, but once he did Mohaather flew in the final furlong to collar pace-setter Circus Maximus and score a first Group One win.

The previously unbeaten Siskin was third, with Kameko fourth having been tight for room in the closing stages.

"He's an absolute aeroplane," Crowley told ITV Racing.

"This is serious - that race there, you're talking about the best milers in Europe. I wouldn't say he's made them look ordinary, but he won very well."

Showcasing shuttled to Haunui Farm in New Zealand for seven seasons and has sired Group Two winners Play That Song, Xpression, and Show Boy.

New editor at the helm of RaceForm

Next week marks the return of New Zealand's stand-alone racing publication RaceForm, and with that a change at the helm following the appointment of Liz Whelan as editor.

For more than five years from mid-2012 Whelan was a familiar face to Trackside viewers, most closely associated with the greyhound code. In early 2018 she moved to Australia, where she was employed as the media and communications manager at Country Racing Victoria.

Covid-19 precipitated Whelan's decision to return to New Zealand and now she is looking forward to her next challenge. Her appointment as editor of RaceForm follows the decision of founding editor Dennis Ryan to step back from the role, however he will remain involved both as a director of Raceform Publications and as a journalist.

"It's great to be back in New Zealand and to be given this opportunity," Whanganui-born and raised Whelan said. "I've loved racing all my life and my childhood memories go all the way back to attending the Waverley races with my parents.

"I'm excited to become a member of the RaceForm team and I'm looking forward to working alongside one of the best in the business. Dennis still has much to offer and I'm pleased that he will be there to guide me through the settling in period and beyond.

"No doubt the whole racing industry will be happy to see RaceForm back filling that essential space and I'm thrilled to be part of the publication's on-going development."

Raceform Publications co-director and business manager Don Hancock expressed his pleasure at Whelan's appointment, which he says augurs well for the future.

"We understand fully the decision Dennis has made and we believe we've found an excellent replacement in Liz Whelan, who no doubt will bring her own ideas and style to the publication," Hancock said.

"It's very satisfying that RaceForm is about to make its keenly-awaited return, thanks in no small part to the concerted efforts of RITA and the codes."

RaceForm will be back on sale from next Thursday August 6, with previews, expert form analysis and tips, trackwork pointers, news and full fields and form for domestic gallops and harness as well as feature Australian gallops. 


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