Morrinsville owner Russell Mead has a big decision to make following the upset deadheat victory of his under-rated three-year-old Speedy Meady at Te Rapa on Saturday.
Speedy Meady backed up from a win as a $1.90 favourite on a heavy10 track at Rotorua last Monday to sneak off the ballot into the Gr.3 Cambridge Breeders’ Stakes (1200m) within the last 10 minutes of scratching time on racemorning and rocked punters when being unable to be separated from Vigor Winner at the head of the field at the winning post.
Meanwhile, Mead was enjoying his overseas holiday, unaware of the result until receiving a response to a text to trainer Stephen Ralph.
Now Ralph has more news for Mead and it involves an increase in interest in Speedy Meady from bloodstock agents.
“There was one Hong Kong buyer showing interest in him prior to the race and now there have been two new enquiries,’’ Ralph said.
‘’It’ll be up to the owner what he wants to do and I’ll be talking it over with him when he gets in touch or I may have to wait until he gets home.
‘’One of the options if he decides not to sell is to take him to Brisbane, like a lot of the others, but I’m not sure about that. If he keeps him, it might be best to back off him and give him a spell.
‘’He’s done more than we imagined when we first got him and if he keeps improving he could do well next season.’’
Speedy Meady began his career with Cambridge trainer Jon Miller and the son of Swiss Ace showed immediate talent with a second and a win in two trials appearances before being runner-up on debut at Te Aroha last January and again a month later at Matamata.
He then joined Ralph’s stable and won first-up for the Te Awamutu trainer at Matamata last month, beating the promising Helena Baby, who was a runaway winner at Rotorua last Monday.
With three wins, two seconds and a fourth (three starts ago behind the smart Riding The Wave at Te Aroha) from six starts, Speedy Meady has gone ahead in leaps and bounds.
“We’ve been learning about him and after he won at Rotorua last Monday I knew we had a horse who would be hard to beat in the Breeders’ Stakes,’’ Ralph said.
‘’He carried 58.5 kilos and ran quicker than the open sprinters on the day and he was out shaking hands on the outside fence more than the inside one.
‘’It was a top run and he just needed to get in off the ballot into the field on Saturday. I was just sitting waiting for the phone call to say he was in and we finally got it at 7.23 am.”
Speedy Meady’s win continued a memorable season for Ralph with the highlight of his 11 wins being his first Group One success, registered by outsider Santa Monica in the Sistema Railway (1200m) at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day.
“We’ve been having a good run,’’ Ralph said. ‘’It really all started when Campobasso won the $50,000 race at Ellerslie on Boxing Day before he was sold to Adelaide.
“Santa Monica and Marissa then won on New Year’s Day and Monaco and now Speedy Meady have kept the flag flying.
‘’Now we’re concentrating on a lot of young horses and our jumpers. We’ve got a smart three-year-old by More Than Ready who was impressive when winning at the Avondale trials.’’
Ralph’s jumpers are Thenamesbond, Hesalljazz and the maiden Trump That.
‘’They’ll all run at Te Rapa next Saturday,’’ Ralph said.
‘’Thenamesbond and Hesalljazz came in a bit earlier, around mid-January, this year and they’re ahead of where they usually are. Thenamesbond will run in the steeples on Saturday and Hesalljazz in the hurdles. I don’t want them clashing at this stage.’’
Thenamesbond has recorded seven of his 14 wins in steeplechases and is again being set for the Waikato Steeplechase (3900m), in which he finished third last year, while Hesalljazz has won twice over hurdles and five times on the flat. - NZ Racing Desk