Impendabelle Surges to NZB Filly of the Year Series Lead

29 October 2023

Impendabelle (NZ) pictured as a yearling 

Proven Group performer Impendabelle (Impending) is the new leader in the New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year Series after winning a dramatic edition of the $175,000 Group Two Jamieson Park Soliloquy Stakes (1400m) at Pukekohe on Saturday.

Purchased by NZB Insurance Advisor Jim Bruford for $80,000 from Hallmark Stud's Karaka 2022 Book 1 draft. 

With a recent honour roll that includes the likes of superstars Imperatriz (I Am Invincible) and Legarto (NZ) (Proisir), the Soliloquy has been elevated to Group Two status this year, meaning the winner now gets a potentially crucial 8 points in the Filly of the Year Series, with 4 for second and 2 for third.

The Soliloquy was the second leg in the 2023-24 edition of the series. The first leg was last month’s Group Three Gold Trail Stakes (1200m) at Hastings, where the winner Quintessa (NZ) (Shamus Award) picked up 6 points and placegetters Chantilly Lace (NZ) (U S Navy Flag) and Oneira (NZ) (Contributer) earned 3 and 1.5 points respectively.

Oneira was the only one of those fillies in the Soliloquy field and was scratched, so Saturday’s second leg was always going to have a significant impact on the leaderboard.

In the end it was taken out by Impendabelle, who had emerged as one of the brightest talents of her generation last season with a win in the Group Two Wakefield Challenge Stakes (1100m) and a close fifth in the $1m Karaka Million 2YO (1200m).

The Tony Pike-trained filly was luckless in the Gold Trail Stakes, clipping heels and almost falling before recovering to run a close seventh. She then chased home standout male three-year-old Crocetti (NZ) (Zacinto) at Te Rapa before turning her fortunes around at Pukekohe.

Luberon’s abrupt exit from the race with 200 metres remaining turned things on their head. Impendabelle had been building momentum just behind Luberon and was about to lodge her challenge, but suddenly she found herself all on her own in front.

It developed into a four-horse battle to the finish, with Impendabelle joined by Tulsi (The Autumn Sun) on her outside while Mary Shan (NZ) (Almanzor) and Molly Bloom (NZ) (Ace High) dived through along the inside rail.

Impendabelle raced greenly in the closing stages, drifting in on to Mary Shan and Molly Bloom, but held on to win by a neck. Mary Shan was second, a neck ahead of Tulsi, with a nose back to Molly Bloom. Impendabelle later had to survive a protest, but she was declared the Soliloquy Stakes winner just over half an hour later.

“She’s really had no luck at all this spring, and it looked like she might not get any today either,” Pike said. “I thought she’d have a nice run following Luberon, but she ended up being left alone in front and started to race a bit greenly. But she fought it out well and it was good to see her get the win. She deserved that.”

Impendabelle now tops the Filly of the Year Series standings with 8 points. Quintessa sits in second place with 6, while Mary Shan has 4, Chantilly Lace 3, Tulsi 2 and Oneira 1.5.

All eyes now turn to Riccarton for the Group One New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) on November 18. The prestigious classic will be worth 12 points to the winner, with 7 for second and 3.5 for third.

Vendor Hallmark Stud
Purchaser Brewers Bloodstock (Auckland)
Breeding Impending – Applegate
Sale Lot 93, Karaka 2022 Book 1, $80,000
Bred by Monovale Holdings Ltd