Wellington Cup bid on the agenda for Southern Sav
17 November 2014
A successful trip to Trentham back in January has laid the foundation for a potential tilt at the 2015 Gr. 2 Wellington Cup for Saturday’s impressive Riccarton winner Southern Sav.
Trainer Michael Pitman, who prepares the five-year-old Savabeel gelding in partnership with son Matthew, indicated the Trentham feature has been the long term target of his charge from the moment he won over 2100 metres on the first day of the 2014 Wellington Cup Carnival
“He has been an immature horse that has done well to win four races to date as he is really only just starting to fully mature,” explained Pitman.
“I’ve always said he was an exciting stayer in the making and when he won at Trentham I said to the owners then I would like to be back in 12 months time for a tilt at the Cup.
“There’s a fair bit of water to go under the bridge before we get there but I think he can make it and may even be back here in a year to contest the New Zealand Cup.”
Pitman was full of praise for the ride of experienced horseman Hayden Tinsley who was seen at his very best to get the horse home a winner after overcoming difficulties during the race.
“Hayden came back after the race and said he had no right to win given how far back he was on a muddling speed,” he said.
“He was crowded at the start and then was well back all the way so it was a true stayers run and a beautiful ride by Hayden.
“In hindsight it was a blessing in disguise that this horse was unluckily beaten at his last start as it allowed us to get a run in this race and he has been good enough to take advantage of it.”
Pitman had cause to thank northern trainers Graeme and Debbie Rogerson who encouraged Pitman to purchase the Savabeel gelding they bred after he was passed in during the Select session of the 2011 New Zealand Bloodstock National Yearling Sales series.
“Graeme said to me he thought he would make a good horse but was very weak as a yearling and hadn’t managed to sell during the sale,” he explained.
“I think his judgment will be proven to be spot on as I do believe we will see the best of him from now on.”
The day was a triumph for the Pitman team who also produced two other winners on the programme in Rivertaine Coup and Coup Rotorua whilst evergreen warhorse El Chico finished a game second to the Rogerson trained Cosmic Cube while No Emotion and Sir Singo also filled minor placings. – NZ Racing Desk