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New Zealand feature nominations close, promises to be a guide to Melbourne spring

July 27, 2011

Nominations for New Zealand’s feature spring races have closed, with a number of New Zealand’s best gallopers entered in their spring Triple Crown.

The Hawke’s Bay Triple Crown consists of the Group 1 Makfi Challenge Stakes (1400m) on August 27, the Group 1 Windsor Park Plate (1600m) on September 17 and the Group 1 Spring Classic (2040m) on October 1.

All races are run at Hastings.

27 entries were taken for the Makfi Challenge Stakes, 32 entries for the Windsor Park Plate and 42 for the Spring Classic.

This year, a number of horses are nominated for all three – including Mufhasa, Wall Street, Booming, Jimmy Choux, Keep The Peace and Katie Lee.

The Makfi Challenge Stakes promises to be an indicator of Kiwi spring chances.

In addition to the horses above, Queensland Oaks winner Scarlett Lady is a confirmed runner on her way to the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups.

Victoria Derby winner Lion Tamer is nominated, although a starting point for his campaign is undecided – he may otherwise resume in the Group 2 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on the same day.

Interestingly, leviathan owner Lloyd Williams has nominated a number of his horses for the feature Spring Classic.

One time New Zealand Derby winner C’est La Guerre is entered, as are I’m Imposing, September Morn and Green Morn.

I’m Imposing is also entered for the Windsor Park Plate.

But most intriguingly, he has also entered 2009 Irish St Leger winner Alandi.

Williams said Alandi would be sent back to Ireland after two failures last year, but he is set to join a crack team of imports chasing spring success.

While no horse has won all three races in recent times, last year’s Emirates Stakes winner Wall Street was nosed out in what was then the Mudgway Stakes before winning the final two legs of the Triple Crown.

He was one of a number of Kiwi stars to trial yesterday morning at Otaki, winning a heat by a half length over 1000m in good time on his way to the Cox Plate.

Stablemate Booming was unplaced and may head straight to Australia.

Meanwhile, the Murray Baker duo of Harris Tweed and Lion Tamer trialled unofficially at Cambridge yesterday.

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