The NZB Insurance Pearl Series was struck twice at Pukekohe last Saturday, with one of the winners collecting her third bonus from the series.
The Joan Egan bred and raced Splash of Red (Reliable Man x Penny Bright) took out the first Pearl Series contest on the card, capitalising on a good run of form to win the 1200m event.
Later that afternoon the Debbie Sweeney-trained Clever Ruds (El Roca x Madam Kirk) picked up her third Pearl Series bonus when winning the R65 Fillies and Mares contest over 1400m.
Clever Ruds was quick to make the most of the profitable bonus series, winning Pearl Series races at her first two starts when debuting as a three-year-old last season.
She has since recorded another two placings and returned to the winner’s circle on Saturday after benefiting from a bold front running ride from Chelsea Burdon, leading from start to finish and winning untroubled by a half-length from fellow Pearl Series eligible rival Madame Moet (Iffraaj x Champagne Katie).
Sweeney is in full support of the series and said the bonus on offer was a great incentive to nominate and target the Pearl Series eligible races.
“We definitely look at targeting those Pearl Series races because it is an extra bonus if you can get it for the owners,” she said. “It is awesome to win them. The racing game is expensive and it certainly helps the owners a lot if you win the bonus. It is great for the trainers as well.
“I think it is a great incentive for people to chase them. I think it is an important series to have running and encourage all my owners to nominate their horses.
“It is well worth doing and we have had a lot of luck with it.”
Clever Ruds was bred by Steve Liddington and John Tarrant who remain in her ownership.
Information about the new NZB Insurance Pearl Series for fillies born in 2020 will be released next week. -NZTBA