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TOFANE GETS HER GROUP ONE WIN

Tofane got her well deserved Group 1 victory with a last-stride win in the All Aged Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on Saturday.

Pierata went clear halfway down the straight with Tofane chasing gamely and under hard riding from Kiwi ace Opie Bosson, Tofane gave her all to edge Pierata by a half head, with Fasika in third.

Mike Moroney watched from Melbourne where he is stranded because of Covid-19 travel protocols but said he has always had an opinion of the daughter of Ocean Park and aimed high this autumn.

"We decided after her spring campaign that we would only target Group One races this autumn," Moroney said.

"I told her owners she would get beaten in a few but I know she will win one.

"Her form had been great. I thought she should have run second in the Newmarket then she ran really well for third in The Galaxy, beaten a nose and a nose.

"Her effort to then run fifth in the TJ Smith Stakes was super because she was luckless from a wide barrier but she still ran the fastest last 200m in the race.

"This is a great result and we will put her away now and set her for The Everest in the spring."

With stables on both sides of the Tasman the All Aged signalled a first elite victory in combination with Bosson.

"Opie has ridden on and off for me over the years back in New Zealand and even when we were winning premierships we didn't have a lot of luck together," Moroney said.

"He does most of his riding for Te Akau Racing and we know he is a world-class jockey but this is our first Group One win together."

Tofane was bred by Curraghmore principal Gordon Cunningham and did her initial education in Moroney’s Matamata barn under the care of co-trainer Pam Gerard.

She won an 820m trial at Te Teko before Ballymore Stable clients purchased her from Cunningham and she was transferred to Moroney’s Melbourne barn.

She has subsequently won the Gr.3 Northwood Plume Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield and Gr.3 Begonia Belle Stakes (1100m) at Flemington.

Bosson hinted he may be back in Australia sooner rather than later with racing and training shut down in New Zealand for the last month because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"She got into a beautiful spot and followed the horse to beat. It was a real dog-fight down the straight," Bosson said.

"I wasn't sure if I won or not. I didn't find out until I saw the screen when I got back.

"Not much is happening back home at the moment, so it's good to be here and good to get a few results."

[18 Apr 20]

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