NZ Group 1 venture a possibility

NZ Group 1 venture a possibility26 Dec 2021

Our bonny Victorian-based mare Excelida took a winning step toward a possible trip to New Zealand with a stylish win at Caulfield this afternoon.

The Exceed And Excel mare overcame a tardy start to post her fifth career victory and a crack at the G1 BCD Group Sprint over 1400 metres at Te Rapa in February is on her radar.

“It’s definitely an option and something we have been talking about and today has given us a bit more confidence,” co-trainer Ben Hayes said.

“We kept her happy and fresh at home and that was very impressive.”

Excelida, who may run next in the Listed John Dillion Stakes on Australia Day, was tardily away today over 1400 metres and settled second last.

Rider Jake Noonan angled her widest at the top of the straight and the five-year-old sailed down the outside to mow her rivals down.

“Ben gave me a great push before the race, he was very confident. I knew I was on the best horse and her class prevailed,” Noonan said.

Bred by Trelawney Stud, Excelida was a A$460,000 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale purchase and is the first foal of the Iffraaj mare Lady Sayyida, who won on three occasions.

She is a half-sister to the multiple Group 1 winner, former New Zealand Horse of the Year and successful sire Ocean Park and to the dam of the two-time top-flight winner and sire Grunt.