IN Racing
Wexford bidding to cap off a classic week at Ellerslie
“They are both very well and while it is hard to see the filly getting beaten, the mile and a-half can change the ball game."
Paul Vettise, LOVERACING.NZ News Desk | February 28, 2024
rainers Lance O'Sullivan (left) and Andrew Scott following Rocket Spade's 2021 Gr.1 New Zealand Derby (2400m) win. Photo: Kenton Wright (Race Images)

A memorable week for Wexford Stables has the potential to get even better at Ellerslie.

Trainers Lance O’Sullivan and Andrew Scott will have two runners in the Gr.1 Trackside New Zealand Derby (2400m) after securing a slot for $700,000 in next year’s inaugural $3.5 million NZB Kiwi (1500m) at Tuesday’s auction at Karaka.

“Andrew and I and brother Paul went into it together and we thought from a marketing point of view it gives our owners an opportunity that not every other stable is going to get,” O’Sullivan said.

“That was the price we thought the slots would go for so it’s pretty exciting.”

Meanwhile, Mosinvader and Monday Melody will chase Classic honours on Saturday for O’Sullivan and Scott, who are already enjoying a fine season with 41 winners on the board to sit equal third in the premiership.

While the outstanding filly Orchestral dominates the Derby market, Wexford are confident their colts will do the stable proud.

“Gate four for Mosinvader will help his chances and the other horse should get in somewhere from 11,” O’Sullivan said.

“They are both very well and while it is hard to see the filly getting beaten, the mile and a-half can change the ball game.

“The best thing for us is if they run it at pace, if they crawl around then I think the filly will brain them. If it is run at a decent clip, it gives the chance to take the sprint out of her.

“It does look as if she will be too good and it wouldn’t surprise us if she won by five or six, and if they do canter around she will.”

Vadamos’ son Mosinvader has impressed since stepping up in trip and finished runner-up in the Gr.2 Waikato Guineas (2000m) before he made ground to run fifth in the Gr.2 Avondale Guineas (2100m).

“He’s progressed well with his fitness, education and confidence and certainly gone the right way since the Avondale Guineas,” Scott said.

“He gives every indication in his racing and his work that he will stay well.

“We couldn’t be happier with our two charges, they are healthy and sound and have coped well with the preps. They are going in as good as they can possibly be.”

Mosinvader is out of the High Chaparral mare Devil’s Melody, whose dam is a half-sister to the Gr.1 New Zealand Oaks (2400m) winner Vapour Trail while stablemate Monday Melody also has plenty of stamina in his pedigree.

“He is from a very tough, rugged New Zealand family that gives us confidence he will also stay the strip,” Scott said.

Monday Melody was sixth in the Waikato Guineas and finished midfield in the Avondale Guineas after racing wide throughout with no cover.

“He lacked luck and he stayed on well considering the tough run he had. He actually ran the quickest last 200m so he was very game,” Scott said.

Monday Melody is the first foal of the Frankel mare Flora De Mariposa, a daughter of the Gr.2 Counties Cup (2200m) winner Jeu De Cartes and the second dam Prized Gem won the Gr.1 Brisbane Cup (3200m) and the Gr.1 Kelt Capital Stakes (2040m).

The Prized mare also produced the Gr.1 Australian Derby (2400m) winner Nom Du Jeu.

“The further he goes the better we think he will be. He’s a Snitzel bred to run 2000m and further and he’s looked like that all the way through,” O’Sullivan said.

lance o'sullivan and andrew scott Wexford Stables Mosinvador Dave and Paul O’Sullivan monday melody Vadamos Gr.1 Auckland Thoroughbred Racing New Zealand Derby Snitzel