Ruakaka Racing's prestigious raceday on Saturday 15th September climaxes the 2018 winter racing season.
Ruakaka's last Saturday meeting of 2018 features the $70,000 Group 3 Cambridge Stud Northland Breeders Stakes over 1200 metres and its richest staying racing the $40,000 Logan Racing Ruakaka Cup over 2200 metres.
$70,000 Group 3 Cambridge Stud Northland Breeders Stakes.
This race is now well established as the preferred next step for the northern region three-year old colts and geldings, with the fillies heading to the second meeting at Hawkes Bay for their single sex event.
Last year Prom Queen proved to be the exception and won comfortably. Will the very impressive Melt, who won easily on the 1st September at Ruakaka also follow that path.
I suspect that the field will be based around a number of runners from the El Roca three-year-old race at Hawkes Bay with a strong local contingent from the Rae-Williams (Hapi Ella) and Gibbs/Bradley team (Not Usual Current).
The Peter McKay stable has enjoyed a winter holiday and are back with two very promising three-year-olds in Cavallo Veloce and Sagunto. Cavallo Veloce must be due for some better luck in running with both his two seconds at Listed Grade being troubled runs. Swap the runs with Cyber Attack at Hawkes Bay and you swap the result.
$40,000 Logan Racing Ruakaka Cup 0ver 2200 metres
The Club had planned for the establishment of the Ruakaka Cup over 2200 metres as its feature pinnacle cup race over 2200 metres in future years and only planned a rating 82 grade for this year. With the changes for the Ellerslie meeting on September 9 from Ellerslie to Te Rapa and then to Te Aroha the $40,000 race over 2200 metres was transferred to the Ruakaka September 15 meeting.
Logan Racing has been synonymous with the Ruakaka racecourse for many years so it was appropriate that they have taken up the offer of sponsorship of the race. There is an expectation that Donna and her husband Peter will be back to attend that meeting. No doubt they will be planning how to win the event with plenty of options like Greencast and Jake The Muss. Last start winner He's Cavalier and the Rae Racing stables Major Tom will be hard to beat.
I am sure if the meeting was held at Ellerslie Charles Road would be stepping out in the race but he maybe looking for another mile race and Counties might be the preferred option, subject to track conditions.
Prom Queen returns
Following a successful gallop between races at the last Ruakaka meeting Prom Queen will tackle the open 1200 metres before heading down south to Riccarton. Following an unsuccessful Brisbane campaign the stable will be keen to see her show her outstanding dash and have a confidence boosting win.
The course will have a six metre inside racing strip that will provide all runners with a great chance. The stage is set for the best race meeting of the year.