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Three-Year-Old Feature Holds Interest for El Roca

7 February

The Group 2 pairing of the Legacy Lodge Waikato Guineas and the David & Karyn Ellis Classic (formerly Sir Tristram Fillies Classic) at Te Rapa today both hold good interest for resident sire El Roca (Fastnet Rock) and could well prove to be significant results for the young stallion if the cards fall his way.

The Waikato Guineas Gr.2 will feature El Roca’s high class daughter Travelling Light who not only steps to 2000m for the first time, but takes on Derby favourite Dragon Leap (Pierro) as connections determine the path they will take with the filly in the coming weeks. An impressive last to first winner of the Group 1 Levin Classic at Wellington, Travelling Light has only been beaten once in her career when forced to lead up in the NZ 1000 Guineas before finishing third. Her win against top males Harlech (Darci Brahma) and Riodini (Proisir) at Trentham was devastating to say the least and ranks the filly among the best three-year-olds going around this season.

Trainer Ben Foote has every confidence the filly will enjoy the step to a middle distance and a first two placing would more than likely see her head to the $1,000,000 Vodafone NZ Derby at Ellerslie in three weeks from today. Regular rider Samantha Collett will guide Travelling Light in the Waikato Guineas and knows the filly well having ridden her in all of her starts bar one.

In the David & Karyn Ellis Classic the Murray Baker/Andrew Forsman trained Showbeel (Savabeel) will be one of the strong fancies for the race after an impressive victory at Trentham in the Desert Gold Stakes Gr.3 under Opie Bosson who retains the mount today.

The impeccably bred filly has always shown her trainers good ability and is one who should appreciate the step up to 2000m being by Savabeel from the Galileo mare Showileo. Bred by prominent breeder Terry Archer & Waikato Stud, Showbeel was a $215,000 purchase for Baker Racing at Karaka and is closely related to Showella, Showcause, Safwan, Safwa, Buster Jones and Zacada. Showileo has a colt foal at foot by Mongolian Khan but carries a positive test to El Roca.