Well Deserved Group 1 Win For Zirna

17 March 2003

Zirna (Deputy Governor x Riverly Lass) confirmed the promise she has shown over the last two seasons with a deserved win in Saturday's $120,000 Group 1 New Zealand Bloodstock Breeders Stakes for fillies and mares at Te Aroha.

After finishing just outside the top three in her last two attempts at Group 1 level, Zirna was rated perfectly by Andrew Calder and was able to wear down the gallant home straight leader Surprize Surprize (Prized x Impossible Dream) to score by a determined long head, with the up and coming Rodrigo Rose (Rodrigo de Triano x Rosebrook) a further � length back in third.

David Walsh, who won last year's New Zealand Bloodstock Breeders Stakes as a jockey aboard St Cecile, trains the Deputy Governor mare and rated his first Group 1 win as a trainer �better than winning the race as a rider�. Zirna is owned in partnership by the Karaka Group (managed by Mike Tololi) and Westbury Stud (Eric Watson and Russell Warwick), with David Walsh the private trainer for the latter.

Zirna was purchased by trainer Stephen Autridge at the 2000 New Zealand Bloodstock Premier Yearling Sale for $40,000 from the draft of Chequers Stud.

Prior to her Group 1 victory, Zirna was placed twice at stakes level as a 2YO, ran third to Vapour Trail in the Group 2 Eight Carat Classic as a 3YO and was fourth in both the Group 1 Zabeel Classic and the Group 1 Whakanui Stud International Stakes this season.

Zirna is from the same family as the very talented Australian racehorse Sports, the winner of the Group 1 VRC Lightning Stakes and the Group 1 VATC Oakleigh Plate, along with the talented Seika, who won the Group 2 AJC Silver Shadow Stakes and was second in the Group 1 VRC Salinger Stakes. The family also features the stakes winners Top Charger, Sparkle �n' Wonder, Clothilde and Medals.

With the 1600 metre trip proving to be to Zirna's liking, the talented 4YO may be aimed at the $150,000 Group 1 Jaguar Easter Handicap (1600m) at Ellerslie on April 19, provided the track is still good.

The New Zealand Bloodstock Breeders Stakes is the only Group 1 race for fillies and mares in this country and represents New Zealand Bloodstock's commitment to supporting quality black type racing for fillies and mares in New Zealand.

New Zealand Bloodstock Ltd
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