Like many Kiwis, five-year-old gelding Ucalledit (Zacinto x Special Bay) is relishing life in Queensland.
The former New Zealand-trained galloper has proved a handy addition to the Kris Lees stable and broke through for his maiden stakes success when comfortably accounting for his rivals in the Listed Lough Neagh Stakes (1400m) at Eagle Farm on Saturday.
Originally prepared by Kevin Myers, for whom he won four of his 14 starts, Ucalledit was purchased by Australian Bloodstock after two Riccarton victories during last year’s New Zealand Cup Carnival.
After striking heavy tracks in two Sydney runs in the autumn, Lees opted to campaign the gelding from his Gold Coast stable and Ucalledit has quickly shown his affinity for the sunshine state, winning four of his five starts from his new quarters, with his career earnings now surpassing A$300,000.
Jockey Michael Cahill had an armchair ride on Saturday, coming from just off the speed to score by nearly two lengths in a seven-horse field.
“He has come a long way. He has just kept improving since he has come here,” said Mel Eggleston, who manages Lees' Gold Coast operation.
“He is a horse that could race once a month and it would suit him and Kris said we might just space his runs and head towards the Buffering (A$300,000, 1350m at Doomben on December 31).
“But when this race came up light he said they’re not going to get any easier and he threw the nomination in and it has proved a great call.
“The horse is just a gentleman. He is a real racehorse and is no bother. He just goes about his business and just takes everything in his stride.
“He is a lovely big strong horse that is sound and he makes his own luck.”
Bred by Bill Lawton, Ucalledit is the eighth stakes winner by Zacinto and is out of the unraced Al Maher mare Special Bay. He was purchased as a Karaka yearling by Kevin Myers from the draft of Grangewilliam Stud for $15,000. – NZ Racing Desk