A recent mid-week meeting at Counties produced two smart three-year-old maiden winners, Musical Blues and Vernanme.
They look certain to go on to bigger and better things, much to the delight of their breeders Auckland NZTBA branch members Vern and Margaret Trillo, who were on course to celebrate both victories.
Making his third race day appearance Vernanme (O’Reilly- Bohemian Blues) improved on his last start third to easily win over 1600 going to the line an impressive one and three-quarter lengths ahead of his rivals.
From the last crop of the champion sire O’Reilly, Vernanme (pronounced Vern and Me) is raced by the Trillos along with this colt’s co-breeder Kevin Hickman, cementing a long partnership the trio have shared since Bohemian Blues went to reside at Valachi Downs as a broodmare in her early breeding days.
Vernanme is trained by Stephen Marsh at Cambridge, and after the win Trillo an esteemed equine dentist, recalled how he had known Stephen for many years, going back to when he used to visit Woodville to work on the horses trained by Marsh’s father Bruce.
According to Trillo when Marsh started out he had promised to give him a horse one day, and after he had let Hickman name the colt, he suggested he be allowed to select the trainer and gave it to Marsh.
Vernanme is a full brother to the champion three-year-old Australian filly of 2010-11 Shamrocker, a winner of four races including two Group One events the Australian Derby and the Australian Guineas. She was also second in the Gr.1 Australian Oaks, the Gr.1 VRC Oaks and third in the Gr.1 Rosehill Guineas. At two she won the Gr.2 Sire’s Produce Stakes.
Another sister is Bohemian Lily who was raced by Hickman, to win the Gr.2 BRC The Roses, and the Listed Gold Coast Bracelet, along with a host of black type placings before retiring to stud in 2016. While a third sister Irish Blues, retained by the Trillos was placed four times in a short race career, and Musical Blues is her second foal. Her first foal Alwahsh (by Sepoy[AUS]) is a winner of two races in South Africa. Irish Blues is due to foal to Tavistock shortly.
Musical Blues(Rip Van Winkle[IRE]-Irish Blues) was on debut at Counties and despite her lack of ring craft won her 1200 metre maiden impressively. She raced wide without cover for most of the race and wound up with a strong late run to win by a short neck.
Raced by the Trillos Musical Blues is trained at Matamata by Lance O’Sullivan and Andrew Scott, she was ridden by Michael Coleman who was very taken by the way the filly found the line.
Back on the subject of Bohemian Blues she is also the dam of another group one winner in Rock Diva, a daughter of Lucky Unicorn(AUS) who won the Auckland Cup and the Gr.3 Sunline Vase. She was also placed in the Gr.1 New Zealand Oaks, Gr.1 Queensland Derby and Gr.1 Queensland Oaks, she too was retired to stud by her owners in 2016.
Bohemian Blues is by Blues Traveller (IRE) out of the Icelandic (IRE) mare Winter’s Tale, she won five races and was a half-sister to Fairy Tale a stakes winner of eight races in Singapore, and to Juryman a winner of 15 races in New Zealand and Macau including the Macau Guineas, the Macau Cup twice and the Macau Gold Cup twice, the Director’s Cup and the Chairman’s Challenge Cup all at listed level.
She is the dam of 11 foals with Vernanme being her tenth while her last foal is a two-year-old filly by Tavistock which has been named Boho which was the nickname the Trillos had for Bohemian Blues.
They acquired Bohemian Blues from Taranaki trainer Dick Bothwell at the end of her racing career. At the time they had raced her half-brother Juryman in New Zealand where he won three races and when they sold him to Macau kept a small share in him and were able to witness him become Horse of the Year in 2006. - Michelle Saba