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Bluebloods : Karaka 2012 Yearling Sale Preview
KARAKA 2012 YEARLING SALE PREVIEW KARAKA 2012 25 KARAKA MILLION DAY N NEW Zealand’s richest thoroughbred race, the $1m Karaka Million-RL (1200m) is an incentive race for two year-old graduates of the Karaka Yearling Sales and is hosted at the Auckland Racing Club's Ellerslie racecourse at a twilight meeting on the eve of the Karaka Premier Sale. The maximum field of 14 starters is determined according to prizemoney won, making the lead-up races around the country a host of hotly contested affairs as horses try to collect valuable stakes to earn themselves a start. With the inaugural running of the Karaka Million in 2008, the race’s four-year history has seen some talented horses compete for the title. The first to take top honours was Vincent Mangano (by No Excuse Needed), an $80,000 purchase from the Premier Sale. That year half the 14-horse field came from the Premier Sale, with four from the Select Sale and three from the Festival or Carnival Sale. The $70,000 Select Sale purchase The Heckler (Lucky Owners) then won the 2009 Karaka Million and carried that form into the Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes-Gr.1 six weeks later. In a perfectly executed plan, The Heckler was purchased by leading breeder Sir Patrick Hogan and a group of friends specifically with the $1m feature as the target. The 2010 edition saw the first international entry take the $1m race, with the Australian-based trainer Liam Birchley winning with Sister Havana (General Nediym). Having run second the previous year with Sarge in Charge, the Aquanita team managed to go one better with its $40,000 purchase. Earlier this year it was Fort Lincoln (Charge Forward) who stole the show, becoming the most expensive winner with a $110,000 price tag. He was followed home by a host of smart youngsters including this season’s star three year-old Antonio Lombardo (Pins), the NZB 1000 Guineas-Gr.1 winner Planet Rock (Fastnet Rock), and Singapore’s newest racing star Super Easy (Darci Brahma), who is unbeaten in five Singapore starts including the E.W. Barker Trophy-SINGr.2 . The Karaka Million twilight meeting also features the $100,000 Karaka 3YO Mile (1600m) for graduates in their three year-old season. A race that began in 2010, the Karaka 3YO Mile has drawn strong fields in its two year history and has been rewarded this year by being upgraded to Restricted Listed status. The inaugural running of the Karaka 3YO Mile saw the Avondale Guineas-Gr.2 and Wellington Stakes-Gr.3 winner Joey Massino (O’Reilly) take the race, beating Martial Art (Tiger Hill) who ran third in the 2011 Singapore Gold Cup-SINGr.1 and Time Keeper (Stravinsky) who went on to win the Easter Handicap-Gr.1 . Keeping it in the family, Joey Massino is a half-brother to the first Karaka Million winner Vincent Mangano. This year the Karaka 3YO Mile saw another talent take the title with the NZ 2009-10 Champion 2YO Banchee (Oratorio (IRE)) romp home by 2.5 lengths. Like the Karaka Million, the race has proven a good form guide with the second placed Icepin (Pins) winning the Avondale Guineas-Gr.2 at his next start, Hoofit (Mossman) taking the Phoenix Stakes-Gr.3 in America and Hammer Down (O’Reilly) winning the Breeders’ Stakes-Gr.3 late last season. The 2012 Karaka Million twilight meeting will be held at Ellerslie on Sunday January 29, with the first race around 5pm. For more information on the meeting and the up-to-date order of entry for the Karaka Million and Karaka 3YO Mile, visit www.nzb.co.nz. ■ ONE MILLION REASONS TO BE AT KARAKA New Zealand Bloodstock’s Karaka Million has become a focal point of the National Yearling Sales and is quickly developing into a feature meeting on New Zealand’s racing calendar. Fort Lincoln Vincent Mangano T.D.T.D.
Feb 2011 Issue - Sale Previews
Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Preview 2012