NZ Guineas double by Fastnet Rock

NZ Bloodstock’s 2012 yearling sale series received a Group 1 boost on Saturday when Karaka graduate Planet Rock won the $300,000 NZ Bloodstock 1000 Guineas (1600m) at Riccarton.

Planet Rock (Fastnet Rock) raced on the pace three and four wide with no cover but still had enough in reserve to defeat Abeautifulred (Handsome Ransom) by a head.

The result was significant for a number of reasons.  It was an emotional victory for Peter and Dawn Williams who have trained in Canterbury for 37 years.  It was their first Group 1 victory on their home track and even more poignant since they are set to relocate to Auckland in less than a fortnight.

It completed the Guineas double for Fastnet Rock who sired NZ 1000 2000 Guineas winner Rock ‘n’ Pop last weekend.

It was also a big result for Wellfield Lodge owner Bill Gleeson who bred both Planet Rock and the runner up Abeautifulred (Handsome Ransom).

“Planet Rock is a big, powerful filly,” Gleeson said.  “She stands at close to 16.2 hands and looks a staying type.

“She will come back to Wellfield for a small break and then she will be aimed at the NZB Filly of the Year races over Christmas and the New Year.  She is bred to run 3200 metres so the step up in distance shouldn’t worry her.

“She has a half-brother in the 2012 Karaka yearling sales by Alamosa and he is an outstanding individual.  Abeautifulred also has a half-brother by Alamosa at Karaka and he too ticks all the boxes and is a lovely colt.

“Planet Rock’s dam Akris is in foal to Alamosa and is due to foal in a few weeks.  The mare was actually stuck in Australia when we sent her to Fastnet Rock due to EI which meant she had to foal down there which wasn’t the plan.  We didn’t get the mare and Planet Rock back to the farm until after she was born.

“We are going to wait and see how Akris foals down before we make any decisions as to whether we cover her again this season.”

Saturday’s win also gives Planet Rock 12 points and the early lead in the NZ Bloodstock’s Filly of the Year Series.  The last four winners of the 1000 Guineas have all gone on to take the crown. 

The next leg of NZ Bloodstock’s Filly of the Year Series, the G3 Eulogy Stakes (1600m), will be held on 10 December at the Manawatu Racing Club.

Planet Rock is the 16th individual Group 1 winner for her damsire Zabeel.  The damsire of 86 individual stakes winners, the elite list includes Darci Brahma, Faint Perfume, Samantha Miss and Anacheeva.

Planet Rock is also the third stakes winner from the Fastnet Rock – Zabeel cross.  It has also produced boom filly Atlantic Jewel and Curved Belle.

Bred by Bill Gleeson, Planet Rock was purchased by Ger Beemsterboer from Wellfield Lodge for $290,000 at NZ Bloodstock’s 2010 Karaka Premier Sale.  She has now won three of her seven starts and over $275,000 in stakes.

Fastnet Rock has three BOBS eligible two-year-olds set to go through the ring at New Zealand Bloodstock’s Ready to Run Sale this week:

Curraghmore Stud’s gelding at Lot 79 from the unraced Dieseis mare Cotton.

Lyndhurst Farm will be offering a Fastnet Rock colt at Lot 301 from the winning Fusaichi Pegasus mare Secret Silence.  The dam is a half-sister three stakes performers.

The filly from Esker Lodge at Lot 310 is out of the Group 3 placed Centaine mare Shimo Star.  Centaine mares paired with sire sons of Danehill have proven highly successful at stud with a 65% winning strike-rate headed by Rockwood, Zingaling, Kaphero and Hoystar.