Bright Future for New Sebring Stakes-Winner
Much missed Sebring added a 63rd stakes-winner to his tally in New Zealand on Saturday when blue-blooded mare Siracusa stormed home out wide to take out the Listed Haunui Farm Karaka Classic (1600m) at Pukekohe.
The Sir Peter Vela-bred and owned mare only made the final field after scratchings on race morning saw her sneak into the race from off the ballot for the day’s feature event.
Co-trainer Julia Ritchie, who prepares the mare with partner Steven Ramsay, had been on tenterhooks on Saturday waiting to see if they had made the final field for the race and then whether they could find a lightweight rider for the mare.
“We knew there weren’t going to be many riders around if we did make the field, so I was really worried for a while,” she said.
“The other thing is that she really likes some cut in the ground and when they posted a Good3, it was also a concern.
“When we got the big shower during the day it was perfect for us although I was still a little worried that they might call the race off if they were slipping.
“We told Ashvin that he should ride her where she was happy and give her plenty of room as she likes her space.
“When she was so far back, I was thinking this is a huge, huge task for her but she still managed to get up when it mattered.”
A blue-blooded member of the Eight Carat (GB) family, Siracusa is out of the O’Reilly mare Corinthia, a half-sister to Group I winner De Beers and grand-daughter of Group I winner Tristalove.
She has now won four of her eight starts with more success to come.
“Based on today’s effort there is plenty ahead for her but we are going to continue being patient as we move forward,” said Julia Ritchie.
“We’re going to enjoy this result and then see how she comes through it before we decide where she goes next.”