At Ellerslie in Auckland, 4-time Gr1-winning NZ Windsor Park shuttler & former European Champion 2YO Mastercraftsman (Danehill Dancer-Starlight Dreams, by Black Tie Affair) celebrated a Gr1 success when 6YO gelding Saint Emilon (Mastercraftsman-Roseario, by Pentire defied all-comers to score by xxx for trainers Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman in the $200,000 Gr1 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes (2000m) from consistent 4YO mare Darscape Princess & 8YO gelding Authentic Paddy. Finally getting the big race monkey off his back after always being there and thereabouts, Saint Emilion soon found himself in front and simply played catch-me-if-you-can tactics to which his rivals had no answer. "When he's in that mood he's hard to catch," co-trainer Andrew Forsman said. "He was cruising and he really deserved that." Off a quick winning prep which saw him go from a 1200m trial to 1500m and then 2000m to land a double, Saint Emilion improved his record to 13 wins (including the Gr3 Alison Stakes) & 4 placings (including the Listed Hawkes Bay Gold Cup) from 36 starts for $387,045 earnings. He went through the ring for $76,000 yearling, consigned by Little Avondale Stud at Karaka's 2013 NZB Yearling Sales Series, but was retained by his breeder when failing to make his $80,000 reserve. "He was bred by my late wife, and she took him to the sales," widower Mike Brown said. "The bid wasn't enough and she took him home. Unfortunately she didn't get to see him race, but he's honouring her memory. We're over the moon."
At Tauherenikau in New Zealand, The Oaks Stud's 5-time Gr1-winning & 5-time Gr1-placed stallion Darci Brahma (Danehill-Grand Echezeaux, by Zabeel) added a black-type success when 4YO New Zealand-bred mare Darscape Princess (Darci Brahma-Cape Princess, by Cape Cross) landed the first stakes victory of her career when running out a comfortable winner of the $50,000 weight-for-age Listed Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes (1600m) for fillies & mares, defeating La Fille En Jeu & Bronsteel. Darscape Princess, who is a half-sister to Gr2 Auckland Thoroughbred Breeders' Stakes (1400m) winner Sensible Princess, improved her record to 4 wins and 2 placings from 10 starts for NZ$79,835 in earnings.