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Strada Cavallo on track for the Guineas

Strada Cavallo wins the Listed John Grigg Stakes at Ashburton
Strada Cavallo wins the Listed John Grigg Stakes at Ashburton

Matamata trainer Graham Richardson thought enough of Strada Cavallo (Alamosa-Abenroad) to nominate her for both the 1000 and 2000 Guineas, even though she was only a maiden.

Late last month with only two career starts under her belt, he sent her South to prepare for those targets, and recently she took a step closer to her goal with a win in the Listed John Grigg Stakes at Ashburton, with the stakes winners Windbourne (Darci Brahma-Sweet Dreams Baby) and Brighton(Buffalo Man[CAN]-Gore Bay [AUS]) in her wake.

Strada Cavallo commenced racing in late July with a third placing over 1000 metres at Ruakaka, six weeks later she was placed fourth in a 1200 metre NZ Bloodstock Pearl Series maiden at Te Rapa, before being despatched to the South Island.

Her first start in the South was in early July in the Zacinto at Inglewood Stud Guineas Trial over 1400 metres where she finished third behind the Te Akau trained Special Memories (Fastnet Rock[AUS] – Memories of You[IRE]) and Risque (Darci Brahma-So Explicit).

A fortnight later over the same distance she came with a well-timed withering run to take out the Listed John Grigg Stakes.

A daughter of the O'Reily stallion Alamosa, Strada Cavallo was purchased by Richardson at the 2014 Select Sale for $60,000 from Bradbury Park who offered the filly for sale on behalf of Nearco Bloodstock.

Nearco Stud retained a small share and Richardson then syndicated the filly amongst a number of his stable clients including; Jason Grigg, Pat Baker, Martina Delany, Tammy Chee, Wayne & Jenny Oliver, Tony Basile, Richard Anaru, Eric Carter, Colin Gilson, Howard Fransz, Francis Fox, Ernie and Marlene Thornton, and Raewyn Armstrong.

She is the first foal of the Danroad mare Abenroad, herself a half-sister to Pennacchio (Align[AUS]) a dual stakes winner of eight races. They are out of the Australian bred mare Abenezra(AUS) a daughter of Rory's Jester and the stakes winning mare Argentinian mare Libia (ARG).

Abenroad is owned by Ian and Jo Dodunski of Matamata and they have a two-year-old full sister to Strada Cavallo. She is currently leased to Nearco Bloodstock.

"The reason we leased her originally was that she is a half-sister to Pernacchio that Nearco own, and she is a lovely big mare and that is what we were looking for to send to Alamosa," according to Adrian Clark Nearco's bloodstock manager.

"We have re-leased the mare and this year she produced a lovely Showcasing colt and she is in foal to that stallion again."

Pernacchio is based in Australia and has a Darci Brahma colt to sell at the Melbourne Premier sale this summer, she has foaled an All Too Hard(AUS) colt and is in foal to Dundeel.

Nearco Bloodstock is a shareholder in Alamosa and a number of other stallions, and Strada Cavallo has become the fourth stakes winner for the Wellfield Stud stallion. She is also the fifth stakes winner bred by Nearco Bloodstock joining the Group One placed Kuro, Avisto, and her half-brother Celtic Tiger and Secret Spirit whose four wins have all been in stakes events.

"It's very pleasing to breed another stakes winner, we must be doing something right. Our oldest horses are only four and between them Kuro and Avisto have won six stakes races, and this early in the season we have three three-year-old stakes winners as well."



- Michelle Saba