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Melody Belle Wins Listed Karaka Million
At Ellerslie in New Zealand on Sunday, Darley's deceased Gr3-winning & multiple Gr1-placed stallion Commands (Danehill-Cotehele House, by My Swanee) added a restricted black-type success when 2YO filly Melody Belle (Commands-Meleka Belle, by Iffraaj) scored by 1.25 lengths for trainers Stephen Autridge & Jamie Richards in the NZ$1 million Listed Karaka Million (1200m) for 2YOs, over fellow 2YO filly Hasahalo (Savabeel-Halloween, by Encosta de Lago) & 2YO colt Felton Road (Pins-Rose Red, by O'Reilly). A $57,500 purchase by Te Akau Racing principal David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna Bloodstock at the 2016 NZB Premier Yearling Sale from the draft of Haunui Farm, Melody Belle improved her record to 2 wins and 3 placings (including the Gr2 WRC Wakefield Challenge Stakes) from 4 starts for NZ$564,075 earnings. Fortuna Bloodstock principal John Galvin commented: "This is special as it is a wonderful race to win," he told NZ Racing Desk. "The syndicate is made up of a lot of existing Fortuna clients who have been in other horses along with some brand newbies. It's a great thrill for them, to not only have a runner in the race but to get the win." Melody Belle is the first foal of Iffraaj mare Meleka Belle who will see her second foal, an O'Reilly colt, presented in the Haunui Farm draft as Lot 850 during the Select session of the National Yearling Sale series that kicks off at Karaka today.