Two-pronged Eight Carat attack likely

Jip Jip Rock winning at Te Aroha last month. Photo credit: Race Images

Owners Sarah Green and Ger Beemsterboer could have two runners in the Group 2 Cambridge Stud Eight Carat Classic (1600m) at Ellerslie on December 26.

Their last-start Group 1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) winner Media Sensation is on target to reappear in the three-year-old fillies’ feature and now stablemate Jip Jip Rock, who also races in their colours, could start in the event, the fourth leg of the New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year series.

In just her third start, Jip Jip Rock produced a game performance for second behind Espresso Martini in the Listed Trevor Eagle Memorial 3YO (1500m) at Ellerslie on Saturday, bouncing out well from her outside draw to lead and only being run down late to be beaten a long neck.

“She’ll probably go for the Eight Carat Classic now,” co-trainer Peter Williams said.

“We really had the Royal Stakes (2000m) at El erslie on New Year’s Day as her main aim, but the mile and a quarter might be a bit far for her at this stage judging by the way she raced on Saturday.

“We had been riding her in behind and getting her to settle, but this time she went straight to the front and just about led all the way.

“The winner came off her back to beat her, but she went really well.”

Jip Jip Rock is the horse that credited Williams’ wife, Dawn, with her 1000th win as a trainer when scoring at Te Aroha on November 13 and the stable went on to win four races that day.

The manner in which the daughter of High Chaparral cleared out to win by five and a quarter lengths at Te Aroha persuaded her trainers to lift the bar with her on Saturday and she has left no doubt in their minds she is headed for more success.

“She’s always shown plenty,” Williams said.

“We don’t want to run the two fillies against each other in the Eight Carat, but we might have to. “She’ll get her chance over more ground later on.”

Williams says Media Sensation has thrived since her Group 1 win. “We were going to put her out in the paddock for a while, but with all the rain we kept her in the stables and just put her out during the day,” Williams said.

“She had four to five easy days and has done really well. “She’ll go to the Eight Carat and we’ll play it by ear until after that. We’l see how she goes there then decide on the Karaka Million 3YO Classic (1600m).”

Media Sensation, a daughter of I Am Invincible, has been beaten just once in six starts and boasts successive black-type wins, having won the Group 3 Soliloquy Stakes (1400m) at Ellerslie in her lead-up to the Riccarton mission.

Stablemate Lovelight is also on a black-type path, being nominated for the Group 1 Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup (3200m) at Ellerslie on March 9.

The six-year-old Zabeel mare has won three of her 16 starts, the first over 2200m and the other two last summer over 2100m, and she produced an encouraging second-up effort when a close third to King’s Cross over 1600m at Pukekohe last Saturday week.

“She’s a real staying mare and we’re hoping to get her to the Auckland Cup. That’s why we’re not putting any pressure on her yet,” Williams said.

“She’ll run in a rating 82 2200m at Ellerslie next Saturday and if she goes well we’ll probably look at some of the others cups.”