By Kevin Robertson, LOVERACING.NZ News Desk
After hinting that he was back to somewhere near his best with a last start third placing at Te Rapa, consistent galloper Seajetz returned to the venue to secure career victory number eight with a fighting performance to take out the feature flat race on the day, the UBP Te Awamutu Cup (1600m).
The Paul Richards-trained five-year-old had been out of sorts in the first three starts of his current campaign but put those showings behind him to dominate his six rivals in the concluding stages of Saturday’s contest, winning by three and a half lengths in the hands of apprentice Ace Lawson-Carroll.
Carrying a luxurious 51.5kgs courtesy of Lawson-Carroll’s 3kg claim, Seajetz looked to be in for a real battle when joining issue with Te Rapa course specialist Crystallize, however he kicked strongly at the 150m to move clear for an impressive victory.
Richards was pleased to see his charge back in the winners’ circle after his run of outs in the early stages of the preparation.
“He has taken a while to come up this year and you would have to say those first three runs were very ordinary,” Richards said.
“We thought he might have turned the corner after his last start and now he has hit form he tends to hold it well.
“The good thing about him is that he seems adept in most types of ground now he has matured as early on he really needed the sting out to be at his best.
“When he won at Pukekohe in November last year (Karaka Classic, Listed, 1500m) he ran a reasonable time on a better track which showed me he is quite versatile.”
Richards was pleased with the ride of Lawson-Carroll who did everything right during the running.
“It was a peach of a ride by Ace,” he said.
“He sat back out of the early speed duel, moved in behind them at the right time and then held him up nicely for a late charge which proved decisive.
“He likes his races spaced a wee bit so it is unlikely he will have another start now until the new season (commences 1 August).
“He holds a nomination for the Winter Cup (Gr.3, 1600m) at Riccarton next month but I’m in two minds about going as it is a long trip there and back when he could stay closer to home and pick up good money around here.”
Bred by the Taylor family of Trelawney Stud, Seajetz is owned by Bill and Sandra Duell who have had a long association with Richards having raced classy galloper Natuzzi from his stable.
The winner of 12 races including six at stakes level, Natuzzi was also placed five times in Group One company for career earnings of over $580,000.