Royally-bred duo win for McKee


Bronte Walk is dominant at the line over Spicey Miss. Kenton Wright

Trainer Stephen McKee presented Bronte Walk (3 B. F. Redoute’s Choice – Coogee Walk, by Success Express) in first-class order for her debut assignment at Pukekohe on Wednesday and in the hands of Samantha Spratt she duly obliged in the Counties Inn Maiden over 1200-metres.
Out well to lead, Bronte Walk was made to run along harder than intended when a rival raced ungenerously on her outside, but she was still able to find the necessary reserves in the long run home.
Clocking 1:10.93 for the 1200m, she never gave backers any real cause for alarm, to return $2.60 & $1.40 on the NZ TAB.
“She did everything right”, McKee said. “That’s where you want to put them in these sorts of races and she did the job quite nicely.”
“She flew the gates today” said Spratt. “I managed to get a bit of a breather when the other horse dropped off, but I was getting a little worried.
Owned and bred by Marie Leicester, Bronte Walk is a daughter of the classy sprinter Coogee Walk.
After commencing her career with a hat-trick of wins, Coogee Walk went on to win the group one Railway Handicap at Ellerslie in 1998, among her seven victories, and included a third in the group one Galaxy at Randwick.
Coogee Walk was trained at Matamata by Dave and Paul O’Sullivan.
President of TRAC Racing Taupo, Marie Leicester is the daughter of James and Annie Sarten, who established the Belle family, while the race named in their honour was won by We Can Say It Now (Starcraft) at Te Rapa on Labour Day Monday, October 25.
Bronte Walk is a half-sister to Activation (Zabeel), a Darwin Cup and Premier’s Cup winner that also finished fourth in a Caulfield Cup, winning nine times for earnings of $844,000.
McKee also had success with another debutante later in the programme when the smart looking Raffles Knight (3 Ch. C. Encosta De Lago – Lady Circles, by Ascot Knight) won the Patumahoe Rugby Club Maiden over 1400-metres.
Made to work before landing outside the leader, Raffles Knight found more to gain a handy advantage inside the final furlong and rider Leith Innes had matters in hand near the line.
He clocked 1:23.79 for the 1400m on footing rated Dead4.
A half-brother to promising New Zealand galloper King Raedwald (Red Ransom), Raffles Knight boasts AJC Oaks winner Circles Of Gold (Marscay) as his grand-dam, while his dam Lady Circles is a half-sister to Elvstroem (Danehill) and Haradasun (Fusaichi Pegasus).
Raffles Knight was purchased by Tony Pike for $280,000 at the Australian Easter Yearling Sales for Raffles Dancers Limited.
Raffles Knight is driven clear by Leith Innes.