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Maher’s ‘Phenomenal’ Mare Continues to Defy Expectations

One of Australia’s most popular racehorses will attempt to add another Grade 1 success to her glittering CV in the Tattersall’s Tiara at Eagle Farm Racecourse next month.

Bella Nipotina showed no ill-effects from a busy campaign on her most recent outing, producing a storming late run to win the prestigious Doomben 10,000 over the weekend.

The six-year-old mare has travelled to compete in several top-class races across Australia in recent months, but was unable to get her head in front.

She was slowly out of the stalls under jockey Craig Williams at Doomben, but came with a withering run in the home straight to pip favourite I Wish I Win on the line.

The victory took Bella Nipotina’s career earnings to a whopping A$9.8 million and left trainer Ciaron Maher running out of superlatives to describe her.

“She hasn’t been in her stable any more than three days over the past few weeks,” Maher said. “She was in Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Newcastle and now Brisbane.

“I thought about the conditions and the track – everything suited and then when we jumped from the barrier, I thought we had no chance. But Craig knows her really well – he took his medicine and it was unbelievable.”

Bella Nipotina initially cost just A$80,000 out of the Rosemont Stud draft at the Premier Yearling Sale, but she has since repaid that outlay many times over.

Part-owner Michael Christian, who also bred the mare, could barely hide his excitement after watching Williams snatch victory from the jaws of defeat aboard her. 

“You need to remember she was racing as an October two-year-old,” Williams said. “She got beaten a lip in the Inglis Millennium at two and here she is as a late six-year-old winning a Grade 1 against some phenomenal horses. 

“Look at her past few runs – she didn’t get any favours in the Grade 1 TJ Smith Stakes and ran second. Then she raced three-wide the trip in the A$5m Quokka and was gallant in defeat.

“She missed the start here and to be able to win from where she was just unbelievable. And she ran down I Wish I Win, who is an incredible sprinter in his own right.”

The Grade 1 Tattersall’s Tiara at Eagle Farm at the end of June is next on the agenda for Bella Nipotina and it would be a brave move to wager against her winning the race.

Punters looking for today’s best bets would be well advised to check out the sportsbooks featured at OnlyRacing.com to find the latest odds for the event.

Given the manner of her performance at Doomben, the extra distance at Eagle Farm could bring about further improvement from the hugely talented mare.

“We’ve always wanted to see her at 1,400 metres,” Christian added. “She’s only run past 1,200 metres once and that was 1,300 metres in the A$3m Giga Kick which she won, so the 1,400 metres of the Tatt’s Tiara is where she’s headed.

“There’s also the Grade 1 Kingsford Smith Cup in a couple of weeks she could go to first, but that depends on how she pulls up and what we think is best for her.”

The biggest threat to Bella Nipotina in the Tatt’s Tiara could be Opal Ridge, who warmed up for the race with a stylish victory in the Listed Ortensia Stakes at Scone Racecourse.

The mare finished fifth as a three-year-old in the Tiara last season, but trainer Luke Pepper believes she has strengthened up significantly since then.

“She’s just going so well – I had a little bit left in the tank knowing what was to come the next few weeks but to see her win like that, wow,’’ Pepper said.

“She doesn’t know how to run a bad race, she’s just so genuine. We’ll head to the Tatt’s again now, most likely via the Dane Ripper again like last year and see if she can’t right some wrongs of twelve months ago.

“She deserves a Grade 1 win – hopefully it’s not far away now.’’

Picture of Gold Coast Magazine
Gold Coast Magazine

Our in-house team and affiliates bringing you the latest in Culture, Lifestyle and Entertainment from around the globe and the great stories of the Gold Coast

Maher’s ‘Phenomenal’ Mare Continues to Defy Expectations

One of Australia’s most popular racehorses will attempt to add another Grade 1 success to her glittering CV in the Tattersall’s Tiara at Eagle Farm Racecourse next month.

Bella Nipotina showed no ill-effects from a busy campaign on her most recent outing, producing a storming late run to win the prestigious Doomben 10,000 over the weekend.

The six-year-old mare has travelled to compete in several top-class races across Australia in recent months, but was unable to get her head in front.

She was slowly out of the stalls under jockey Craig Williams at Doomben, but came with a withering run in the home straight to pip favourite I Wish I Win on the line.

The victory took Bella Nipotina’s career earnings to a whopping A$9.8 million and left trainer Ciaron Maher running out of superlatives to describe her.

“She hasn’t been in her stable any more than three days over the past few weeks,” Maher said. “She was in Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Newcastle and now Brisbane.

“I thought about the conditions and the track – everything suited and then when we jumped from the barrier, I thought we had no chance. But Craig knows her really well – he took his medicine and it was unbelievable.”

Bella Nipotina initially cost just A$80,000 out of the Rosemont Stud draft at the Premier Yearling Sale, but she has since repaid that outlay many times over.

Part-owner Michael Christian, who also bred the mare, could barely hide his excitement after watching Williams snatch victory from the jaws of defeat aboard her. 

“You need to remember she was racing as an October two-year-old,” Williams said. “She got beaten a lip in the Inglis Millennium at two and here she is as a late six-year-old winning a Grade 1 against some phenomenal horses. 

“Look at her past few runs – she didn’t get any favours in the Grade 1 TJ Smith Stakes and ran second. Then she raced three-wide the trip in the A$5m Quokka and was gallant in defeat.

“She missed the start here and to be able to win from where she was just unbelievable. And she ran down I Wish I Win, who is an incredible sprinter in his own right.”

The Grade 1 Tattersall’s Tiara at Eagle Farm at the end of June is next on the agenda for Bella Nipotina and it would be a brave move to wager against her winning the race.

Punters looking for today’s best bets would be well advised to check out the sportsbooks featured at OnlyRacing.com to find the latest odds for the event.

Given the manner of her performance at Doomben, the extra distance at Eagle Farm could bring about further improvement from the hugely talented mare.

“We’ve always wanted to see her at 1,400 metres,” Christian added. “She’s only run past 1,200 metres once and that was 1,300 metres in the A$3m Giga Kick which she won, so the 1,400 metres of the Tatt’s Tiara is where she’s headed.

“There’s also the Grade 1 Kingsford Smith Cup in a couple of weeks she could go to first, but that depends on how she pulls up and what we think is best for her.”

The biggest threat to Bella Nipotina in the Tatt’s Tiara could be Opal Ridge, who warmed up for the race with a stylish victory in the Listed Ortensia Stakes at Scone Racecourse.

The mare finished fifth as a three-year-old in the Tiara last season, but trainer Luke Pepper believes she has strengthened up significantly since then.

“She’s just going so well – I had a little bit left in the tank knowing what was to come the next few weeks but to see her win like that, wow,’’ Pepper said.

“She doesn’t know how to run a bad race, she’s just so genuine. We’ll head to the Tatt’s again now, most likely via the Dane Ripper again like last year and see if she can’t right some wrongs of twelve months ago.

“She deserves a Grade 1 win – hopefully it’s not far away now.’’

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Picture of Gold Coast Magazine

Gold Coast Magazine

Our in-house team and affiliates bringing you the latest in Culture, Lifestyle and Entertainment from around the globe and the great stories of the Gold Coast