Osipenko (NZ) Shines in Hobartville Stakes
19 February 2023
Group One-placed in the Caulfield Guineas (1600m) in the spring, Karaka graduate Osipenko (NZ) (Pierro) took the next step with an exceptional performance in Saturday’s A$400,000 Group Two Petaluma Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill.
Bred and sold by Valachi Downs, Osipenko was a $160,000 purchase from Book 1 of Karaka 2021. His six-start career has produced two wins, two placings and A$618,125 in stakes.
Trainer Chris Waller gave Osipenko a small taste of racing as a winter two-year-old, finishing first and second in two starts at Rosehill last June.
He was unplaced in his first start as a three-year-old, but then he charged home from second-last for a terrific third in the Caulfield Guineas (1600m) second-up on October 8.
His autumn campaign has followed a similar pattern, with an unlucky first-up fifth in the Group Three Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m) laying the foundations for Saturday’s spectacular second-up performance against a star-studded field.
Ridden by Nash Rawiller, Osipenko made use of his inside gate and slid forward in the early stages of the race, ultimately settling in fourth along the rail.
Rawiller began to creep closer to the leaders coming up to the home turn, and when a gap appeared between them in the straight, he drove Osipenko straight through it.
Osipenko quickened sharply and raced past the tiring leaders, holding out the fast-finishing Zou Tiger (Zoustar) and Matcha Latte (Maurice) in a tight three-way finish.
“I’ve got to say I was shattered after his first-up run,” Rawiller said. “We drew barrier three, got caught three wide in third-last, and he was hanging out. So probably the three worst things you can get in a horse race. To only finish three and a half lengths off them was very credible, I thought.
“Thankfully the owners have stuck solid and given me another chance. It just worked out perfectly for him today and he’s a horse with good ability.
“I think he was above himself first-up, he needed that to take the edge off him. Today he was a more professional colt, and I’m really happy to get the job done.”
Waller’s assistant trainer Charlie Duckworth was delighted with Saturday’s performance.
“Nash made amends today and gave him an absolute peach,” he said. “He began much better from the barriers, put himself in the perfect position in the run and made it very difficult for the short-priced favourite who had to work hard.
“Nash just bided his time up the straight and said 'yahoo Sally' at the 200 and off we went.
“Bring on the mile. I'm confident he will stay beyond that as well, but the ultimate goal is the Randwick Guineas (Group One, 1600m) next start.”
Osipenko was bought at Karaka by Guy Mulcaster on behalf of Chris Waller Racing and the Kaha Syndicate, which was put together specifically to target classic types at Karaka.
|Kaha/Chris Waller Racing (New South Wales)
|Pierro – Raskova
|Lot 60, Karaka 2021 Book 1, $160,000
|K J Hickman ONZM