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El Roca a Reliable Source of Success

26 November

El Roca’s progeny continue to run hot with the Westbury Stud resident’s impressive tally of recent winners including international and domestic black-type successes.

The prolific son of El Roca has sired 11 winners already this month and headlined by the G2 Hong Kong Jockey Club Sprint winner Lucky Patch and the G3 Wellington Stakes winner White Noise.

Lucky Patch’s latest victory this week for trainer Frances Lui and rider Jerry Chau has boosted his prospects of top-flight success in the upcoming G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Sprint.

The five-year-old had to overcome the outside gate at Sha Tin and did so with ease for an emphatic victory, cutting out the 1200 metres in 1m 07.98s for the seventh victory of his career.

“Honestly, I couldn’t say I was confident when I looked at the draw because I was concerned, but he rode him very well. I told him to study how Zac (Purton) rode him last start,” Lui told the Hong Kong Jockey Club.

“The pace was good and the horse has improved. Jerry did a great job and the horse is going very well.”

Emerging three-year-old White Noise has now won three of his six starts for trainers Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman and relished the good ground at Otaki after finishing sixth on rain-affected going at his previous appearance.

“He has always shown quite a lot of ability, just at times he hasn’t quite put it all together. He just struggled on that bad track at Tauranga last start,” Forsman said.

“We decided to put the blinkers on, we knew it was going to be a quicker track and they would run a long a bit and just hoped it would sharpen him up and he did it quite easily I thought in the finish.”

A future program for the promising grey, who holds a nomination for the G1 New Zealand Derby, has yet to be locked in.

“We haven’t really made any plans,” Forsman said. “He has been up a while. He is going to be due a freshen-up at some point and that might be now.

“We will just have a think about it, talk with the owners and see what they want to do and come up with a plan in the next day or two.”

El Roca, whose flagship representative to date is the G1 Levin Classic winner Travelling Light, has proved popular with breeders since his retirement following a racing career that saw him triumph in the Listed Eskimo Prince Stakes and Group 1 placings in the Randwick Guineas and George Ryder Stakes.

Offering outstanding value at $8000 + GST, El Roca’s progeny sold for up $200,000 at New Zealand Bloodstock’s National Yearling Sale in January.

Te Akau’s David Ellis secured his top-priced lot, now named Roc Anthem, offered at Karaka by Westbury Stud. The youngster is out of the Encosta De Lago mare Anthology, a daughter of the G1 Railway Handicap winner Imananabaa, and has placed in his only trial outing.