Media Sensation Puts NZB Filly of the Year Series Lead on the Line

Contessa Vanessa (NZ) winning the Group 2 Eight Carat Classic in 2017.
Contessa Vanessa (NZ) winning the Group 2 Eight Carat Classic in 2017.

Ellerslie’s famous Boxing Day races will feature the fourth leg of the New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year Series, the $100,000 Group 2 Cambridge Stud Eight Carat Classic (1600m), with a field headlined by the Series front-runner Media Sensation (I Am Invincible).

The Peter and Dawn Williams-trained filly won last month’s Group 1 Gavelhouse.com New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m), earning 12 points and taking a clear lead on the Filly of the Year Series points table. The Eight Carat Classic will be her first start since that Riccarton victory.

Valalie (Snitzel) is in second place on the table with 7 points, with Xpression (NZ) (Showcasing) third on 6.5. Queen of Diamonds (NZ) (Savabeel) and Avantage (Fastnet Rock) are in equal fourth position with 6.

The Eight Carat Classic is worth 8 points in the Filly of the Year Series, and Queen of Diamonds is the only one opposing Media Sensation at Ellerslie who could be within striking distance. Trained by Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, she was a dominant last-start winner of the Group 3 LawnMaster Eulogy Stakes (1550m).

Her stablemate Espresso Martini (NZ) (High Chaparral) is also a last-start stakes winner, having taken out the Listed Trevor Eagle Memorial (1500m) at Ellerslie earlier this month.

The runner-up in the Eight Carat Classic will earn 4 points, with 3 points for third.

The Eight Carat Classic will be run as Race 6 on Boxing Day with a start time of 3:27pm.

# Horse Draw Comments Trainer Jockey
1 Media Sensation 3 NZB Filly of the Year Series leader Media Sensation (I Am Invincible) has won five of her six starts, two of them at stakes level. Her most recent appearance was an outstanding victory in the Group 1 Gavelhouse.com New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) at Riccarton last month. Peter & Dawn Williams Michael Coleman
2 Queen of Diamonds 12 Beautifully bred filly Queen of Diamonds (NZ) (Savabeel) cost $640,000 at Karaka as a yearling, and she has delivered top-class performances in her last two starts including the Group 3 LawnMaster Eulogy Stakes (1550m). Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman Matt Cameron
3 Espresso Martini 7 By High Chaparral out of a Group 1-winning mare, Espresso Martini (NZ) has had four starts for two wins and two placings. She stepped up to stakes level last start with victory in the Listed Trevor Eagle Memorial (1500m). Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman Opie Bosson
4 Annie Okay 5 Annie Okay (NZ) (Battle Paint) won on debut at Avondale in September, then took a big step up in class for her second start and ran second to Media Sensation in the Group 3 Soliloquy Stakes (1400m). She was unlucky when unplaced in the Trevor Eagle Memorial in her only other start. Shaun & Emma Clotworthy Vinnie Colgan
5 Musical Blues 9 Well-related filly Musical Blues (Rip Van Winkle) won on debut, then was tripped up by a wet track at Pukekohe. She bounced back to form with a last-start placing behind Tiger Silk at Ellerslie. Lance O'Sullivan & Andrew Scott Taiki Yanagida
6 The Real Beel 8 Group 2-placed last season and fifth in the Group 1 Sistema Stakes (1200m), The Real Beel (NZ) (Savabeel) was a strong-finishing second over 1400 metres last start. Jim Pender Sam Spratt
7 House Of Cartier 10 By Alamosa out of the multiple Group 1 winner Shez Sinsational (NZ) (Ekraar), talented filly House of Cartier was a stylish last-start maiden winner at Pukekohe. Nigel Tiley Sam Collett
8 Pinmedown 4 Pins filly Pinmedown (NZ) finished fifth in her first two starts, then scored a smart victory at Hastings in her most recent appearance. Michael Moroney & Pam Gerard Jake Bayliss
9 Rip Em Up 1 While still a maiden, Rip Em Up (NZ) (Rip Van Winkle) has placed in three of her five starts. She has strong form around subsequent Group 1 performers such as Dawn Patrol (NZ) (Dawn Approach) and Valalie (Snitzel). Stephen Marsh Jason Waddell
10 Spring Bouquet 2 Darci Brahma filly Spring Bouquet (NZ) has had just two starts, winning the most recent of them at Pukekohe via promotion. Tony Pike Shafiq Rusof
11 Petrabella 11 Pierro filly Petrabella (NZ) was a debut winner at Avondale, then didn't have all favours when unplaced at Ellerslie in her other start. Moira & Kieran Murdoch Leith Innes
12 Van Irving 6 Van Irving (NZ) (Rip Van Winkle) was a debut winner last season and has placed in one of her two starts in 2018-19. Stephen Marsh Michael McNab

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