Richards’ Gr1 Quartet

Gr1 WRC Levin Classic at Trentham

David Ellis’ Group One strike rate from the Gold Coast sale ring was enhanced further on Saturday when star filly Imperatriz scored a brilliant win in the Gr1 Classic at Trentham.

Sent out the favourite after a smashing last start five length win at Matamata, Imperatriz led home an incredible first four result for Hong Kong bound trainer Jamie Richards.

Race rider Michael McNab had the filly positioned in about fourth place for much of the journey before sprinting clear in the straight and holding out all challengers to win by almost a length.

“She’s a weapon – just an absolute weapon,” McNab said.

“She put herself there, and I had to be so patient. I didn’t want to go too soon, because she was just that little bit suspect at the mile.”

“But when she went, there was no stopping her,” McNab added.

From just nine starts, the daughter of I Am Invincible, has notched six classy wins, two placings and a Gr1 fourth and earned NZ$373,200. Her broodmare value soared with her win at racing’s elite level today.

Te Akau’s David Ellis went to A$360,000 to secure Imperatriz from the draft of Bhima Thoroughbreds at the 2020 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale in what has proved a masterstroke from the renowned bloodstock judge.

“She was brilliant today,” trainer Jamie Richards said. “She’s a very good filly, and I’m very proud of her.”

“She was able to hold her spot today from her good barrier. They didn’t run overly quick and it wasn’t a truly run mile, which probably suited her. It took the backmarkers out of the race.”

David Ellis has sourced a number of Gr1 winners from the Gold Coast sale ring over the years – horses like Princess Coup, Tell a Tale, Sword of State and Costa Viva.

His latest star Imperatriz is the first winner, from two to race, for his dam, the two-year-old winning Shamardal mare Berimbau.

Before retiring to stud Berimbau earned black type with a third placing in the Group Two Moonee Valley Fillies Classic.

Raced by Godolphin, Berimbau was purchased by Imperatriz’s breeder Raffles Racing for A$180,000 at the 2016 National Broodmare Sale at the Gold Coast.

Last year Peter Tighe’s Magic Bloodstock and Associates purchased a Fastnet Rock half sister to Imperatriz for A$300,000. She’s now named Cabaca and the two-year-old has trialled twice for Chris Waller.

Imperatriz is a three quarter sister to the smart Tony Gollan trained Vinco – an eight time winner and A$369,000 earner. He’s a last start metropolitan winner at Toowoomba.

Winner: Imperatriz

  • Breeding: I Am Invincible-Berimbeau (Shamardal)
  • Breeder: Raffles Dancers (NZ) Pty Ltd
  • Race: WRC Levin Classic Gr1 (1600m)
  • Sold for: A$360,000
  • Sale: 2020 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale
  • Vendor: Bhima Thoroughbreds (As Agent)
  • Buyer: DC Ellis
  • Earnings: NZ$373,200
  • Owners: Te Akau Invincible Empress Racing Partnership (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM)
  • Trainer: Jamie Richards (Matamata)

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