Day ends well for Cambridge team
5 December 2014
A frustrating start to the programme was put aside when the Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman training partnership bagged a winning double to close out their day at Ellerslie last Saturday.
The duo currently sits atop the national trainer’s premiership ladder and expectations were high they would extend that lead however it wasn’t until Sakhee’s Soldier continued his meteoric rise to the elite level with his victory in the feature Gr. 3 event on the day that those expectations were fulfilled.
The win of promising mare Sports Illustrated over 1400 metres in the last race on the card added icing to the cake with the four-year-old mare signaling she has more wins in store during this campaign.
“We had eight runners in on Saturday and early on we just couldn’t take a trick however as it worked out we managed a couple of victories so it was a good way to finish the day,” noted Forsman.
“Sakhee’s Soldier provided a great result as we thought he might struggle against Veyron if the tempo was slow but there was some pressure on through the middle stages which played into our hands and he finished off really well.
“Sports Illustrated has really strengthened up during her break and the form around her first up run was strong so we did expect a good performance from her.”
Described as a “bulldog” by rider Opie Bosson, Sports Illustrated showed she will be a force to be reckoned with in any upcoming assignments as she powered home to beat the highly rated Ultraviolet.
“She’s a big rangy mare and we tried to get her up to a middle distance during her three-year-old season but I do think she is better suited as a miler so that’s where the focus will be with her this time in,” said Forsman.
“She has really strengthened nicely and her run on Saturday was very good as she was wide for a good part of the journey and she extended beautifully with a powerful sprint to get the win.
“We will see how she comes through the race but at this stage we are looking at the Group Two fillies and mares race at Te Rapa on Waikato Cup day for her next run.”
Forsman was also delighted with the performance of promising three-year-old Ambitious Unicorn who finished close up in third in the Listed Trevor Eagle Memorial earlier in the day.
“He just doesn’t know much about the racing game at present so to run third behind some very promising types with more experience augurs well for him, especially as it was his first attempt at Ellerslie,” he said.
“We’ll sit down and work out where to go next with him but he does hold a nomination for the Group One Levin Classic so that will be in our minds when we do work out a programme for him.”- NZ Racing Desk