Niagara gelding Peace Train dashed home over the final stages of his 1400m maiden contest to score in fine fashion at Te Rapa on Sunday.
Having just his third start, the Russell and Robyn Rogers-bred and trained gelding had caught the eye with a comfortable trial win at Taupo earlier in the month.
“We’ve always liked him but he’s just taken time to put it all together,” Robyn Rogers said.
“We had him ready to go as a late three-year-old but the tracks had turned so his two runs were in the wet which just doesn’t suit him.
“He got a good track at the trials and really showed what he could do. Lynsey (Satherley) rode him that day and told me afterwards there weren’t many horses that could let down like he did so we were quite confident of a good run when we got him to the races.
“There looked to be a bit of a front runners bias before the race so we weren’t that concerned if he didn’t win, but in the end, he put them away well which is very exciting.”
Rogers and her husband will now look at a rating 65 1400m back at Te Rapa next month as their immediate target for Peace Train who became sire Niagara’s 17th individual winner. That success is music to the ears of the couple who are shareholders in Niagara, who currently stands for a fee of $5,000 at The Oaks Stud.
“We paraded Niagara at our place when he first came to New Zealand and really loved what we saw,” Rogers said.
“We ended up taking shares in him and have bred some lovely horses to him.
“Time will tell but Peace Train could go on to do some big things as a stayer which will be great for us and his sire as well.”
The victory also capped off a fine week for the Rogers’ broodmare La Campanella with Peace Train’s Shamexpress half-brother sold to Melbourne-based trainer Mick Price for $100,000 on the first day of the New Zealand Bloodstock Ready To Run Sale of Two-Year-Olds on Wednesday.
– NZ Racing Desk