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Jungle Pocket opens account for Class of 2003

The honour of being the first New Zealand-based freshman sire from the “Class of 2003” to leave a southern hemisphere winner has gone to Rich Hill Stud’s Jungle Pocket (Tony Bin-Dance Charmer by Nureyev).  
 
His daughter Lady Sakura (ex Lady Bay by Kingdom Bay; bred by Alan Galbraith) started favourite and won on debut over 1100 metres at the Opunake RC meeting in New Plymouth on Wednesday.  She is trained by Mark Walker for the Te Akau Syndicate No. 9, managed by David Ellis, who purchased her for $90,000 from the Rich Hill draft at the 2006 New Zealand Premier Sale. That price was the fourth-highest paid for the 16 Jungle Pocket yearlings sold at Karaka last summer, and well above their average price of $66,578.

Lady Sakura and placegetters Crossword and Let’s Rule collected all of the $7,500 Thoroughbred Bonus Scheme prizemoney added to the race, because all three horses are qualified for the Scheme.  Lady Sakura’s share of the bonus boosted her total winnings from the race to $9,225, well above the basic winner's prizemoney of $3,750.
 
Jungle Pocket has shuttled since 2003 between Shadai Farm, Japan where he was Horse of the Year in 2001, and Rich Hill Stud. In Japan he is the sire of four winners including the G3-winning juvenile Fusaichi Ho O.
 
Nine other New Zealand first season sires have had local runners and six of those have been represented by placegetters: Van Nistelrooy, Strategic Image, No Excuse Needed, Diamond Dane, Pyrus and Riviera.
 
 
- Susan Archer