Please wait...


Clarken Racing | Clarken Racing News 53099 Bella Vella Sights Set On Another G 1

Bella Vella sights set on another G1

Bella Vella sights set on another G1

For the second time in her life, Bella Vella is aiming to go from breeding barn to Group 1 glory and, again, Will Clarken has been charged with making it happen.

While that first mission was ultimately successful, the Adelaide-based trainer still concedes there were mistakes he's learned from for the sequel.

"I know we thought in a much lower grade she was ready to go first time out for us and she wasn't, she wasn't near ready," Clarken said.

"I know this time we have to give her lot of galloping simulation before we take her to the races because she's going to have to compete at a higher level straight away."

Bella Vella was purchased at the Magic Millions broodmare sale last winter by Rosemont Stud for $1.9 million but failed to get in foal, despite all relevant tests showing no issues.

She first went to the barn in 2018 and was unsuccessfully covered by Criterion, a champion horse who was later discovered to have significant fertility issues as a stallion.

She'll return to the breeding barn this spring but, given she was showing she'd lost none of her zest for racing, connections opted to put her back in work to pass time with a goal of another G1 Sangster Stakes win.

"She's going to have a lot of jumpouts, she's had two already and I think she'll have five trials before she goes to the races," Clarken said.

"With a long layoff, we've just got to switch her back on again.

"There's no pressure at all because Mitho (Rosemont Stud's Anthony Mithen) and I have the same mindset, that the horse is 100 per cent the first priority.

"She has to go out there and not just run but be ultra-competitive first-up and, if she's not, she'll be going straight back to the paddock and waiting to get covered again next season."

Bella Vella will make her return on April 23 ahead of what is hoped to be a Sangster run, second-up, on May 7.

She'll trial for the final time a couple of weeks prior to her race return, although it's planned that final trial will feel just like a race to the G1-winning mare.

"It'll be 1000-metre trial on a big track at Morphetville and Murray Bridge and it'll be handlebars down," Clarken said.


ICYMI - Galaxy Patch runs a smashing second in the Hong Kong Derby

  A $50,000 Adelaide Magic Million purchase by Will Clarken, Suman Hedge Bloodstock and David Jolly the son of Wandjina was purchased with Hong Kong in mind. After winning impressively on debut at Morphettville, Hong Kong was on the radar.   Instantly the gelding made his presence felt in Hong Kong winning on debut he then went on to win three further races following an unplaced run on the all weather track. Going into the Hong Kong Derby he was second at Group One level against California Spangle. The step up to 2000 metres was a question mark having previously only ran over the sprint trips.   From the big raw lad we purchased at the Adelaide Magic Millions in 2021 it is such a pleasure to see the vision we had almost become a reality on international shores.   Galaxy Patch became the second horse selected at the Adelaide Magic Millions by Will to reach the Hong Kong Derby after Prawn Baba a $20,000 purchase placed seventh in 2017.

Read more

Kuroyanagi's spring goals

South Australian filly Kuroyanagi will spell in Victoria after a terrific run to finish third in the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes at Caulfield, with her trainers already looking ahead to further elite-level targets in the spring. Niki O'Shea, who co-trains with Will Clarken, said the filly could head towards Guineas options later this year, having shown a great deal of raw talent in just her first racing preparation. "It was great, she was fantastic," O'Shea said. "When she came off the bit early, I thought we were in big trouble, so I was just happy that she did what she did. "On Sunday morning you wouldn't have known she'd had a run. She's actually going to stay there, she's gone to the paddock at one of those nice places down at Mornington." Clarken and O'Shea were not sure where Kuroyanagi would get to in her first preparation, with the view the $390,000 Written Tycoon filly will be a superior three-year-old galloper. "We've hardly trained her really, she's just done it under her own steam, we nearly put her in the paddock three or four times and she just kept pointing us in the right direction," O'Shea said. "He (Brenton Avdulla) said she was just green, ran off the corner and ran around the place, she's still six months away. He said she might even be a Guineas-type of horse, she's got the big action and she'll only keep improving."Story from Tim Yeatman

Read more

Clarken ‘blown away' by his Blue Diamond filly

Blue Diamond contender Kuroyanagi is doing things Will Clarken has never seen before. The Group 1-winning trainer is astounded by the physical development of the talented filly and her appetite for work, confident she's going to run a big race in Saturday's $2m feature at Caulfield. Clarken has been open about the fact he's been searching for an excuse to tip Kuroyanagi out, convinced she's going to be even better as a three-year-old, but she's just thriving. "It's amazing. Me and (co-trainer) Niki (O'Shea) are just blown away by what she's done," Clarken said. "I could send people a video of her first gallop this prep and you'd just think it was a different horse. The way she's improved and the way she can handle pressure in a preparation is phenomenal. "I've never had a juvenile who has strengthened and developed in work. Week-to-week she's getting bigger and stronger and more durable. She's a ferocious doer and nothing fazes her. "I haven't dealt with a lot of really good young horses like this but she's just obviously got a great constitution." Kuroyanagi first came to prominence in early January when superstar jockey Jamie Kah made a rare visit home to South Australia to ride her to a dominant victory in a jumpout at Murray Bridge. She went on to win her debut in soft fashion at Gawler before an agonising second across the border in the Group 2 Blue Diamond Prelude for fillies earlier this month. "She's just come home and thrived. I haven't had one travel back and handle it so well for a long time," Clarken said. "That was our main concern as it was the first trip away for a young horse but she's put on weight, she's really above herself and he work has been terrific – we've been able to get two good gallops into her." With Kah and Blake Shinn, who partnered Kuroyanagi in the Prelude, opting to go elsewhere, Clarken was left searching for a suitable rider and he was watching a recent Sha Tin meeting when it hit him that Brenton Avdulla would be perfect. "I like to keep an eye on Hong Kong racing because we've got a small pool of horses over there now and he's riding so well," he said. "I was going through options, I asked a couple of Sydney guys and they had rides up there, so I said to (racing manager) Lachie (Weekley) ‘why don't you ask (Avdulla)'? "We watched him ride a double at the Chinese New Year meeting and I thought ‘imagine getting him on, it'd be awesome'." Kuroyanagi is rated an $18 hope with the TAB and Clarken thinks that presents good value. "The gate (two) to me is not ideal, I would've liked to have drawn out a little bit, but we've got the gun riding her, so that will help," he said "If she gets a little luck in running, I think she's a genuine each-way chance. "It's hard to say that going into big Group 1s but she has trained on remarkably well."

Read more

8 Ellis Ave Morphettville SA 5043

Copyright (c) 2021 Clarken Racing. All rights reserved.