IN Racing
Richardson all smiles with Bonny Lass
Talented filly Bonny Lass put a big smile on the face of co-trainer Graham Richardson.
NZ Racing Desk | February 20, 2022
Bonny Lass. Photo: Trish Dunell

Talented filly Bonny Lass put a big smile on the face of co-trainer Graham Richardson after she returned to winning form with a comprehensive victory over 1200m at Ellerslie on Saturday.

Richardson, who prepares the daughter of Super Easy with training partner Rogan Norvall, had been confident of a good performance following some impressive trackwork earlier in the week and once she secured an ideal barrier draw in gate two, that confidence increased.

A well-judged ride from Craig Grylls saw Bonny Lass settle behind the pacemakers before diving through a gap against the rail at the 250m to draw clear for a comfortable one and a half-length victory.

Richardson has always rated the filly, who was placed twice at Group One level during her two-year-old campaign, as above average and believes she is ready to tackle stakes company again at her next start.

“That good draw made all the difference as last time she got caught three-wide on the speed and that cost her as she just couldn’t kick on in the last little bit,” he said.

“Craig got her away nicely and waited for the run to come and she put them away fairly easily.

“Her work on Tuesday morning was outstanding and once she got the good draw, I had the feeling she was going to be hard to beat.

“At this stage she will be coming back to Ellerslie in a fortnight for the Mufhasa Stakes (Listed, 1400m) and safely through that we might take her down to Trentham for the Levin Classic (Gr.1, 1600m).

“She might be a little suspect at the mile, but against her own age that might be the best time to see if she can get it.”

Richardson is disappointed that he may have to find a replacement rider for Bonny Lass in the Mufhasa Stakes after Grylls copped a seven-day suspension and $1500 fine for his ride aboard La Crique when winning the Gr.2 AJC Avondale Guineas (2100m) later on the Ellerslie card. 

“It is very frustrating to see more senior jockeys being suspended (with Opie Bosson also suspended) when our biggest carnivals are coming up,” he said.

“We just don’t have enough jockeys for so many to be out at the same time and it has a serious effect on our racing as every week we are searching for riders.

“I understand that there has to be a deterrent and our racing has to be safe, but I’m an advocate for fining them far more than they are now.

“We just don’t have the jockey pool to have our best riders sitting on the sidelines each week and it can cause more issues in races when the less experienced are out there.”

Richardson also confirmed the immediate task for stable warhorse Tiptronic who will tackle the Gr.1 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes (2000m) at Ellerslie on March 13 following a solid run for fifth on an unsuitable wet track at Te Rapa in the Gr.1 Herbie Dyke Stakes.

“Tiptronic has come through Te Rapa well and he will be heading to the Bonecrusher next,” he said.

“He didn’t really handle the ground at Te Rapa, but he kept trying which he always does and he will be ready to go another big race at Ellerslie.

“We are also getting two of our three-year-old fillies ready for the Oaks (Gr.1, 2400m) at Trentham next month with Bigiff heading to the Sunline Vase (Gr.2, 2100m) at Ellerslie in a fortnight while Aspen Colorado will have her final lead-up in the Lowland Stakes (Gr.2, 2100m) at Hastings.”

Raced by her breeder Sandy Moore along with Brent and Wendy Cooper and the Social Racing Starting Gates syndicate, Bonny Lass has won four of her 8 starts and over $162,000 in prizemoney.

Hallmark Stud will offer a half-sister to Bonny Lass by Shocking as Lot 501 during Book 1 of the New Zealand Bloodstock National Yearling Sales which commences at Karaka on March 7.

Bonny Lass Graham Richardson Super Easy Rogan Norvall Craig Grylls Ellerslie Tiptronic