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GRANDDAUGHTER OF A MILLIONAIRE, TIA D'OR WINS STYLISHLY AT ELLERSLIE

A descendant of million-dollar earner Giovana (Blues Traveller), Tia d’Or (4 m Tavistock – Zarvana, by Zabeel) recorded a tremendous victory in the $27,500 Rating 65 2100 metres on Saturday at Ellerslie.

Having kept up a good gallop for third after working forward in the Rating 65 2100 metres on 3 February at Te Rapa, Tia d’Or was able to cross and lead from barrier nine for jockey Samantha Collett, who was also aboard for her debut victory in November at Avondale, and again last start at Te Rapa.

After galloping in a nice rhythm, Tia d’Or appeared to travel best turning for home and the big striding mare let down with an impressive turn of foot at the 200m to clear her rivals by two and a quarter lengths.

It was a compelling victory and certainly one to instil delight for breeder Carol Marshall, who shares in the ownership with her sister Linda Farley and husband Graham Farley.

Boasting royal bloodlines, out of a mare that resulted from the mating of Champion stallion Zabeel (Sir Tristram) and Giovana (Blues Traveller), Tia d’Or paid handsomely to return $13.70 & $3.40 in the race sponsored by Auckland Co-op Taxis. She ran the 2100 metres in 2:12.5 on Dead4 footing.

A beautiful mare herself, Giovana won four Group One races, including the Queensland Oaks (Gr. 1, 2400m), Thorndon Mile (Gr. 1, 1600m) and two weight-for-age races over 2000 metres, before leaving some highly sought after progeny. Her first foal, Chivana (Fusaichi Pegasus), made $350,000 in 2005 at Karaka, and four years later came sale topper Medici (Encosta De Lago) for $800,000. She has since had progeny sell for $200,000 and $310,000 respectively.

The win kept up a good vein of form for the stable, who produced three-year-old filly Tokorangi (Redwood) to win the Waikato Guineas (Gr. 2, 2000m) on Legends Day at Te Rapa, last Saturday, while Sound (Lando) ran a great race for second in the Avondale Cup (Gr. 2, 2400m) earlier on the programme at Ellerslie.

Always of a high opinion about the mare, co-trainer Pam Gerard had been happy with the track work by Tia d’Or leading into the race and duly impressed by the performance.

“She worked really well on Tuesday morning and we were happy with her,” she said. “She looked fantastic and in a really good frame of mind.”

“We just needed a softer trip than last time and thankfully it panned out that she was able to get breathing in a nice tempo before the pressure increased a bit inside the 1000 metres.

“She was quite green earlier on and now gaining confidence and learning how to be a racehorse. She’s always had the ability. She’s got an impeccable pedigree and every win is huge.

“I almost turned her out after her third last time at Te Rapa because I thought she might have had enough, but Carol (Marshall) said to keep her going. I’m pleased we did because she’s put on weight and more cocky and confident.

“She appreciates jar out of the track and it was a nice dead track today. I think she might be happier going right-handed, too, and it’s always good to win at Ellerslie.

“Sam (Collett) is getting to know her quite well and she was really happy with how much she is improving. She said she didn’t have to do too much and Tia (d’Or) just took her around. She wanted to stick with her, so obviously gives her a good feel.

“She’s such a big mare, leggy and not quite there yet physically. So, hopefully she’s got a fair bit in front her when she does fully mature.”

Gerard was also pleased with the second placed effort by Sound (Lando) in the Avondale Cup.

“It was only his second run back after Mike (Moroney) gave him a race over 1800 metres in January at Caulfield,” Gerard said.

“Troy (Harris) thought he had the outside horses covered, but didn’t quite see the light weight (Robusto) come up the inside, and he was giving him seven-kilos. Troy was really happy, said the horse was out on his feet the last bit but still a huge run.

“He should be in the Auckland Cup for a long way. He had a good blow today and we’ll keep his fitness up. I thought in the birdcage he looked a little bit pretty, but we just have to get him to the next level.”

Sound ran very well for second in the Auckland Cup (Gr. 1, 3200m), on a hit-and-run mission in March from Ballymore Stables in Melbourne, and has returned for the Avondale Cup and another tilt at the Auckland Cup.

In good form during his spring campaign, finishing second in both the Bart Cummings (Gr. 3, 2510m) and Hotham Handicap (Gr. 3, 2500m) at Flemington, he looked good winning the Sandown Classic (Gr. 2, 2400m) two starts ago and franked the form with a good performance.

Tia d’Or was strapped by Rathore Singh. 
[20 Feb 21]

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