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NZTBA members Kylie Fawcett and Eddie Wright, the breeders of Villifye and Miss Keepsake, have a great weekend

Trainer Graham Richardson continued his winning ways when Villifye (NZ) (O'Reilly) landed the Group Two Windsor Park Stud Japan Trophy (1600m) at Tauranga on Saturday.

The four-year-old daughter of O'Reilly (NZ) scored by the barest of margins from Postman's Daughter (NZ) (Postponed) and Jeu de Cartes (NZ) (Stravinsky), with winning rider Craig Grylls coming widest of all on the Slow 9 track.

The victory continued a record-breaking season for Matamata trainer Graham Richardson, who registered win number 33 to take him to 9th on the National Trainers' Premiership.

Richardson indicated the Group One Fiber Fresh New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders' Stakes (1600m) at Te Aroha was on the agenda for Vilifye (NZ).

"We were thinking twice about running her today on the slow track, but it was a Group Two and her main target is the Group One at Te Aroha and this race fitted in nicely," Richardson said.

"It's obviously been a hard run and we'll see how she pulls up, but she's very, very gutsy."

A winner of four from ten starts, the all important victory was the first at stakes level for Villifye (NZ) who is a half-sister to Queensland Oaks winner Miss Keepsake (NZ) (Keeper).

"Even next year she's going to be a better horse and once she gets up over a mile and a quarter that'll be her best distance.
"It's fantastic for the owners and she's a half to a Group One winner, so she's worth a lot of money now."

Bred by Tirau couple Kylie Fawcett and Eddie Wright, NZTBA memberswho operate the boutique breeding operation Oxford Thoroughbreds, Villifye (NZ) is raced by a large group of owners under the Oxford Thoroughbreds No.2 Syndicate banner.

Villifye (NZ) is the 56th individual stakes winner by Waikato Stud stallion O'Reilly (NZ), who holds a commanding lead in the New Zealand General Sires' Premiership.


Group One winner Miss Keepsake (NZ) (Keeper) (pictured above) returned to the winner's stall for the first time in almost two years with an explosive performance in Sunday's Bert Lillye Memorial Handicap at Kembla Grange. The five-year-old resumed from a 12 week break and after settling off the speed she rattled home to defeat fellow stakes winner Salade (Snitzel) by two lengths with three-quarters-of-a-length to third placed Ramsays Curse (Brahms).

It was Miss Keepsake's first win since she claimed the Group One Queensland Oaks in early May 2010 when prepared by Andrew Scott in New Zealand. Miss Keepsake (NZ) joined Joe Pride's Warwick Farm team at the start of last year and was placed in three stakes races during 2011. Her winning time of 1:15.63 at Kembla for the 1300m was just .2 seconds outside stablemate Neeson's track record set when he won the same race two years ago. Jockey Christian Reith was confident Miss Keepsake (NZ) was ready to produce something nearing her best after riding her in a recent barrier trial at Warwick Farm. "Her trial the other week was awesome so after that we were very confident today as long as she put it all together," Reith said. "She had just been lacking confidence but she raced with a lot of it today. "If she keeps that going she's going to be in for a good campaign." The victory brought up a treble for Reith at the south coast track's premier meeting featuring the Keith Nolan Classic.

Also bred by Kylie Fawcett and Eddie Wright along with Rachel Spriggens, Miss Keepsake (NZ) is by Cambridge Stud-based Keeper from Jacilo (NZ) (Entrepreneur) who is a half-sister the outstanding Group One gallopers Grosvenor and National Gallery.

- NZTM Website