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Clarken Racing | Clarken Racing News 53097 Fairytale Return For Bella Vella

Fairytale return for Bella Vella

Fairytale return for Bella Vella

Bella Vella has made a fairytale racetrack return, landing Saturday's Group 3 R.N. Irwin Stakes (1100m) at Morphettville.

The Group 1 winner had been retired and was knocked down for $1.9 million as a broodmare on the Gold Coast last May and had not sighted a racetrack in 392 days.

Purchased by Rosemont Stud, Bella Vella failed to get in foal on three occasions to superstar stallion I Am Invincible, prompting connections to resurrect her racetrack career.

The seven-year-old, who was sent out a $5.50 chance after a recent trial win, jumped to the lead under Kayla Crowther and held off a determined Instant Celebrity.

Saturday's win adds another chapter to the incredible story of Bella Vella, who was originally purchased for $100,000 at the Magic Millions Yearling Sales in 2016.

Bella Vella had been retired once previously, after winning four sprint races on country tracks under three different trainers, before finding her way to the care of Will Clarken after being picked up at an online auction for $22,500.

Clarken could not hide his admiration for the mare post-race.

“It’s quite incredible, I don’t think it will happen again where she has come from and what she’s achieved,” Clarken said.

“She just has this unbelievable internal strength to want to compete.

“You could see as soon as she walked back into the stable that she was going to come up again... I knew from a long time ago.

“She’s been faultless, she’s sound, she’s happy.

“She wants to be part of the stable and she really is a dream for me.

“When the chips are down she’s there for you.

“It took me a while to accept taking her back.

“I am not someone who goes to the well too many times but it’s just phenomenal."

Bella Vella, who also failed to get in foal to Criterion in 2019, is expected to head on May 7 to the G1 Sangster, the race she won in 2020.

The win continued a successful day for Rosemont Stud, who won the VOBIS Gold Dash when Midwest was also able to lead from start to finish.


Kuro's low-key return

A home-state, black-type win is the immediate aim for South Australia's most-exciting young horse Kuroyanagi, but Will Clarken admits it's hard not to dream about spring features in both Melbourne and Sydney. The Blue Diamond placegetter made a low-key return to the track in a 600-metre jump out at Thomas Farms Racecourse Murray Bridge on Thursday, pleasing both her trainer and jockey Ben Price. Clarken said the Listed Lightning Stakes (1050m) at Morphettville later this month shapes as the perfect kick-off race and a suitable chance for the filly to secure a Stakes win, after her Group 1 and Group 2 placings over summer. "All being well, we'll get a good trial into her at Balaklava in seven days' time and then a nice gallop on some Good ground, we'll look to kick her off in the Lightning," Clarken said. "It'll come down to her first-up performance but races in both Melbourne and Sydney are definitely there as options. "It was such a vintage year of juveniles, so we'll just have to pick our way through and dodge a few of them. "We just want to get a black-type win next to her name, so we'll just chase little fish to start and build into it. "But we cant hide our excitement about her." During her first racing campaign, Clarken maintained that the daughter of Written Tycoon was far from the finished product and he said he's satisfied with the physical development she's made since the Blue Diamond. And while her early targets are likely to be in the 1000-1200-metre range, he's excited at the prospect of stretching her out in trip. "She's got a lot stronger in her time off," he said. "We did the right thing by stopping after the Diamond, so she got a really good spell into her. "Skeletally, everything has settled down because she was just feeling her shins off and on last prep. "I'd love to see her rolling over seven furlongs because I just think she's got this amazing action. "Brenton (Avdulla) gave us some amazing feedback that she felt like a horse that would get further after he rode her in the Diamond."Story from (James Tzaferis)

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Former South Australia galloper a future Hong Kong star

Galaxy Patch showcased his remarkable turn of foot once again at Sha Tin on Sunday, June 23, clinching a dominant victory in the HK$4.2 million G3 Premier Plate Handicap (1800m) for trainer Pierre Ng. Ridden by Vincent Ho, Galaxy Patch surged from near-last to first in the home straight, completing the race in 1 minute and 48.64 seconds. The four-year-old galloped the final 200 meters in a swift 21.69 seconds, finishing as the race’s second favourite with betting apps in Australia. “He’s a future star with immense potential. He was the best horse in the field, and that’s why he can perform like this. From a wide barrier (10), we just aimed to settle him. He was a bit keen over the first 400 meters but then relaxed just before the turn,” Ho said post-race. Galaxy Patch, sired by Wandjina, initially raced in South Australia as Gulinga Spirit under Will Clarken and Niki O’Shea before being sold to Hong Kong. Earlier this month, Galaxy Patch triumphed in the HK$4.2 million G3 Lion Rock Trophy Handicap (1600m). His impressive record now includes six wins from 12 starts in Hong Kong, with notable runner-up finishes in the HK$13 million G1 Queen’s Silver Jubilee Cup (1400m) and the HK$26 million BMW Hong Kong Derby (2000m) this season. “I just took my time, let him gradually advance, and then asked for an effort. He’s a very decent horse,” Ho remarked. “Thanks to Pierre’s team for their support and trust – riding such quality horses means everything.” Beauty Joy finished a neck behind in second, with Happy Together securing third place. The race favourite, Chancheng Glory, ended up in fourth. “It was likely from an impossible position, but he’s shown versatility across various distances. Now at 1800 meters, he even placed second over 2000 meters,” Ng commented. “He’s like an all-rounder, typical of Australian horses, adaptable from short to long distances. He was much more mature today, and I hope he continues to develop next season.” “We’re definitely targeting big races. Let’s see what the schedule holds,” Ng added. This victory was part of a treble for Ng, propelling him back into the lead for the trainers’ championship with 65 wins, ahead of Francis Lui’s 63. Ng also celebrated success in both feature races of the day, with Mugen and jockey Karis Teetan overcoming California Spangle in the HK$4.2 million G3 Premier Cup Handicap (1400m).Story from JustHorseRacing

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