The first day of Spring may have occurred a week ago, but when it comes to seeing the elite horses back in action, all eyes will be on day one of the Hawkes Bay Carnival this Saturday which features the $400,000 Group 1 Tarzino Trophy over 1400m.
The Tarzino Trophy has attracted a star-studded lineup for the resumption of Group 1 racing and features a host of last season’s superstars in Sharp ‘N’ Smart, Legarto, La Crique, Pennyweka, Belclare, Callsign Mav, Dragon Leap, Pier, Skewiff, and He’s A Doozy.
NZ Horse of the Year contender Sharp ‘N’ Smart resumes in the Tarzino Trophy, and while the 1400m could well be a tad short for the multiple Group 1 winner, the son of Redwood has had a thorough preparation to fit him for Saturday’s assignment and whatever he does on the weekend, he is sure to derive excellent benefit from the outing.
Trained by Graeme and Debbie Rogerson, this time last year Sharp ‘N’ Smart defeated Cognito at Whangarei over 1400m before heading to Australia to take out the Gloaming Stakes Gr.3 over 1600m and post his first Group 1 success when winning the Spring Champion Stakes at Randwick.
The imposing individual backed up a week after his Spring Champion Stakes victory with a marvellous second in the VRC Derby Gr.1, before returning home to New Zealand where he collected the Herbie Dyke Stakes Gr.1 (2000m) and the NZ Derby Gr.1 (2400m).
The field opposing Sharp ‘N’ Smart on Saturday is of the highest calibre with Legarto, Pennyweka and last year’s Tarzino Trophy winner Callsign Mav all winning at Group 1 level in Australia during the past season, while the likes of La Crique, Pier, Belclare, and He’s A Doozy were successful at the elite level in New Zealand.
New Zealand’s Champion Jockey of 2022-23, Michael McNab, will take the ride aboard Sharp ‘N’ Smart.