Raise The Flag’s Riccarton reminder
By Jonny Turner
Orepuki Lad served up an emphatic reminder of what his sire Raise The Flag can do on this side of the Tasman with a brilliant victory at Riccarton last weekend.
Raise The Flag's incredible recent run of success has dominated South Island breeding headlines while New Zealand racing has been shut down.
The White Robe Lodge sire showed he can leave exceptional horses on this side of the Tasman too, when Orepuki Lad beat a quality field when racing returned to the South Island at Riccarton on Saturday.
The 6yr-old, from The Gladiator mare, The Star Gazer, announced he was back in brilliant style by bolting in by a massive four and a half lengths in open company over 1600m for trainers Graham and Michael Eade and jockey Kylie Williams.
The 6yr-old son of never gave his rivals a look in when surging to the front before the home turn.
The further Orepuki Lad went, the further he went in front of the field, as he ran to the fifth win of his short career.
The emphatic victory showed the son of Raise The Flag is in for an exciting winter and spring campaign that would see him build on his already impressive record.
Orepuki Lad already has a listed win in the Dunedin Gold Cup and listed pacing in the Riverton Cup to his name.
The victory came hours after Raise The Flag produced yet another exciting stayer in Australia.
Guns Ablazing relished a step up to 2400m for the first time in his short career when fighting hard, after racing outside the leader throughout, to win at Geelong
The victory came in just the fifth career start for the 5yr-old son of Yamanin Vital mare, Kiko.
Guns Ablazing was bred by long-time White Robe Lodge clients, the late Kelly Thompson and his wife, Isla.
The untapped galloper had one start as Ascot Park before joining the Mornington stable of Amy and Ash Yargi.
While Raise The Flag has been making big waves across the Tasman recently, Ghibellines has continued to show his worth in Australia, too.
His impressive debut winner, Smokin Romans, kept his unbeaten intact when making it two wins from two starts at Ballarat on Tuesday.
The White Robe Lodge bred son of former classy Yamanin Vital racemare, Inferno, cruised to a two length victory over 1500m for trainers Cairon Maher and David Eustace and rider John Allen.
Smokin Romans will hold a significant place in Maher's career because of the victory.
It was the trainer's 1000th career win.