Sword Of State too sharp in King’s Plate

Four-time Champion Sire Snitzel is at the top of his game with 32 stakes performers this season including Group 1 winners In The Congo, Wild Ruler & Yearning. (PHOTO: Bronwen Healy)

A blazingly fast time of 1:08.17 confirmed the merit of Sword Of State’s tenacious victory in Saturday’s NZ$100,000 King’s Plate 1200m G3 on Ellerslie’s Derby Day card. 

Even more impressively, the 3YO son of Snitzel carried topweight from the second-widest gate, and still levelled up for a thrilling battle with a speeding Babylon Berlin in the straight. 

Sword Of State prevailed by a hard-earned head to score his sixth win and fourth in Group company, with 5.5 lengths back to Iconic Star in third.

Trainer Jamie Richards, who prepares Sword Of State for the Te Akau 2020 Four Colts Breeding Syndicate, added, “He’s got a great attitude, that’s probably his biggest attribute, and a lovely demeanour.

“He’s not an overly big colt, but has plenty of natural strength and could shorten up some of the big, rangy, mares that are in New Zealand. He’s going to be a really good fit, I think.”

Sword Of State’s stud future is already settled: he races in the colours of Cambridge Stud’s Brendan & Jo Lindsay. 

Bred by Go Bloodstock Australia from Group-placed juvenile In the Vanguard ( by Encosta de Lago), Sword Of State was bought by David Ellis for $600,000 from Newgate Farm’s draft at Magic Millions. He joined Snitzel’s list of 18 Group 1 winners as a juvenile with a 3.5 length victory in the Diamond S. G1, earning the title of New Zealand’s Champion 2YO.

His pedigree is a good example of Snitzel’s effectiveness with mares whose dams are by Danehill or his sons: In the Vanguard’s Group 2-winning dam Sharp is by Danzero. Other examples are Group winners Castlereagh Kid, Immortal Love, Sweet Redemption & Vulpine. 

A repeat mating with the four-time Champion Sire was definitely in order and In the Vanguard is now safely back in foal to Snitzel. 

With 15 winners of 19 Group & Listed Races, Snitzel’s 2021/22 season is beginning to assume vintage status, and with 8 stakes wins on seven consecutive Saturdays, his hoof is firmly on the accelerator. 

Notably, all but four of those 19 stakes successes have been at Group level, including three Group 1 victories by Inglis Easter graduates In The Congo (Golden Rose) & Wild Ruler (A.J. Moir S.), and Arrowfield graduate filly Yearning (Thousand Guineas).

Snitzel was also represented on Saturday by a quartet of new 2YO stakes performers: Arrowfield graduates Dashing Legend (2nd, Reisling S. G2) & Wee Nessy (2nd, Foundation Plate LR), plus Boyfriend (2nd, Todman S. G2) & Sketched (3rd, Foundation Plate LR).

Snitzel has 26 yearlings at Inglis Easter – 16 of them offered by Arrowfield; two fillies in Book 1 of Karaka 2022. 

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