Breeders’ Stakes unique double in the offing
JOHN Sargent won’t be drawn into a prediction that Orutan can emulate her mother, 2006 Matamata Breeders’ Stakes heroine Naturo and win the 42nd edition of the two-year-old fillies’ feature next week.
The ultimate result would complete a unique mother-daughter double and while that’s certainly not lost on the pair’s trainer it isn’t something that he believes will happen as a matter of course.
‘‘They’re very different types in their style of racing,’’ said the master of Ladbrook Park Stables. ‘‘Naturo used to get back in her races and really drive home whereas this filly is more of a jump and run type.
‘‘On the other hand they’re very similar mentally – laid-back and easy to deal with – and even though they don’t look alike they’re both precocious and suited to two-year-old racing.’’
Naturo, an elegant bay, lined up in the 2006 Matamata Breeders’ Stakes as the winner of her only start whereas Orutan, a chunky chestnut with a massive blaze whose name is a back-to-front version of her mother’s, has yet to win after three starts. In the first of those she finished fifth of seven, next time out she showed the benefit of the experience to finish second and at her most recent start finished third in the Wakefield Challenge Stakes at the Wellington Cup carnival. ‘‘ Trentham was a big jump in class and she did very well to finish so close, especially given she didn’t cop the wet track,’’ said her trainer. ‘‘ The group two placing did a lot for her value and as her mother’s first foal it’s a good result for Naturo too.’’
No one would argue that the best was never seen of Naturo who was forced to retire with a record of three wins from six starts after breaking down badly in the New Zealand 1000 Guineas. She started favourite in the November 2006 race and looked like justifying that support when she cruised into the action on the home turn only to wind up fifth.
The merit of her effort soon became obvious when she limped off the track with a severely damaged front fetlock. After a long recovery period in Christchurch she returned north to her co-breeder and partowner Andrew McLachlan’s Kiwitahi property and the following spring was mated with Waikato Stud stallion Pins.
Orutan is the result of that mating and she was followed by another filly, this one by Darci Brahma, who was purchased outright by another coowner-breeder Barry Wright for $80,000 at the National Yearling Sales earlier this month. Like those before her, she will eventually go into work with John Sargent.
‘‘She’s a quality filly too and it would be nice to think that she’ll be able to make the cut for the Breeders’ Stakes next year,’’ said Sarge, who also prepared Banchee to win Matamata’s flagship race 12 months ago. ‘‘For now though, it’s all go for next week. We’ll be giving it our best crack with Orutan.’’
In the blood: Orutan who is set to match her mum’s Matamata Breeders’ Stakes victory.