Wexford Stables have locked in the Gr.2 Waikato Stud Foxbridge Plate (1200m) as Dragon Leap’s next major target following his convincing win at Ruakaka on Saturday.
The seven-year-old gelding was first-up in the 9 Sep Alibaba’s Flying Carpets KeriKeri (1100m), with his spring plans resting on the outcome.
Despite his 62kg impost, punters backed him into $1.70 favouritism and he did not disappoint, running out a three-length victor.
Dragon Leap was returning from a three start Queensland Winter campaign, which included a runner-up result in the Gr.3 BRC Sprint (1350m) and trainers Lance O’Sullivan and Andrew Scott were pleased to see him back in winning form.
“It (win) was certainly heartening for the team,” Scott said.
“Sometimes when you bring them back from Australia you never know how well they are going to run, but it was a heartening performance to see him back, sprinting well and quickening in the way you would hope.”
Scott received positive feedback from jockey Opie Bosson following the win, which has given the Matamata conditioners confidence to press on to the Foxbridge Plate at Te Rapa on August 26 with their charge.
“Opie got off him and said he felt great and quickened well under him. He gave us the confidence to concentrate on the Foxbridge,” Scott said.
“To see him quicken as well as he did yesterday, we would like to see something similar in the ground at Te Rapa and he can quicken the same way.”
Following his run in the Foxbridge, Scott said they will likely remain in New Zealand with the gelding for the remainder of the spring.
“We will concentrate on local racing at this stage of the preparation. There are some good options here for him in the first part of the spring,” he said.
“We will try and build a form line with him. He has been hot and cold from time to time, so we just want to get some consistent racing into him."