Monday, 18 June 2012
: Lightly raced Ishiguru gelding Shenzhou Steeds continued New Zealand's brilliant record in Queensland staying races this season by claiming the $200,000 Listed Ipswich Cup on Saturday.
| Mike Moroney|
Photo by Racing and Sports
The victory extended the impressive record of New Zealand trained or bred horses in the Ipswich Cup to 10 of the 13 winners since 2000.
Trained by Michael Moroney and ridden by Eddie Wilkinson, Shenzhou Steeds (Ishiguru x Sun City) showed good determination in the final stages of the race to gun down the breakaway runner Kinnersley (Al Mahar) to win by half-a-length. Shenzhou Steeds
was successful at stakes level last season when winning the Listed Sunshine Coast Guineas (1600m), one of three consecutive races wins he claimed in Queensland as a three-year-old.
"He has won four from four in Queensland now and he might go on to the Caloundra Cup in a fortnight and then the Grafton Cup," said trainer Michael Moroney.
Saturday's race was Shenzhou Steeds' first attempt beyond 1600m and Moroney is confident that the four-year-old can run out 2400m.
Bred by Chequers Stud, Shenzhou Steeds was passed through the ring at New Zealand Bloodstock's 2009 Karaka Select Sale.
Saturday's win was his sixth from just 14 career starts and has taken his earnings to $267,000.
Other New Zealand gallopers to claim the Ipswich Cup since 2000 include Reign Supreme, Henderson Bay, Portland Singa, Forest Jim, Sphenophyta, Sculptor, Bianca and Our Lucas who won back-to-back titles in 2009 and 2010.
Ishiguru - a son of Danzig - shuttled between Chequers Stud and Tweenills Stud in England until his premature death in 2009.
He is the sire of 72 winners from 127 runners, including G2 winner Hellvelyn and Ferneley.
Shenzhou Steeds is one of six individual stakes winners for the late stallion.
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