VEYRON wins 2ND EASTER
VEYRON and rider Rogan Norvall sealed a popular win in Saturday's Group One Manco Easter Handicap.
Saturday's win was VEYRON'S fourth Group 1 success. Jockey Rogan Norvall missed a lot of racing as he recovered from a broken ankle and collarbone suffered in a trials fall in December. He returned to riding late last month but there was never any doubt about his reunion with VEYRON for the Easter Handicap according to trainer Linda Lang. "This would probably give me my greatest pleasure. I've probably endured the most pressure ever these past ten days because people were saying Rogan didn't have his eye in, he wasn't race fit. But what a ride. When he went to the fence I thought he's got to be travelling really well. He just knows this horse inside out. I said to Rogan yesterday they won't beat him'. In a different way, he was as well as he was before the Waikato Sprint. I'm really rapt for Rogan. I've backed Rogan and he's proved everyone wrong."
The Easter Handicap was Norvall's first ride on VEYRON since winning the Group Three Eagle Technology Stakes at Ellerslie in November.
He had worked hard to be fit in time for the Easter Handicap through a regime of swimming, cycling, walking and gym work and after the race revealed Laing was a driving force in motivating him to keep at it. "Linda kept pushing me to make sure I was ready for this race," Norvall said "I'm grateful to all those people who worked with me to get me fit enough."
Norvall produced a great ride to get VEYRON home. Drawn barrier 18, he pushed forward and got the front, slowing the tempo of the race he then took a trail as Jetset Lad looped the field. he was held up for a run in the straight but when the run came he finished well to score by 1/2 a length.
POSTMANS DAUGHTER ran a gallant second placing after being wide and finished a 1/2 head clear of FLEUS DE LUNE who ran her second Group One placing within the space of a week.
It was VEYRON'S 13th win from 21 starts taking his stakes earnings past NZ$724,000.
Norvall rated Saturday's win every bit as satisfying as last year's Easter Handicap when Veyron provided him with his first Group One win.
"It's just as good. Being sidelined and watching him go around without me was hard but then to come back and win a Group One on him as quick as I have is awesome. Everything has worked out to plan. I was a little bit worried turning in. I had a couple of horses holding me in but I just had to bide my time and wait. But like the good horse he is he was able to just push out and make his own luck. I'm so proud of him."
There was drama just hours before the race when Veyron cut his nose on a tap in a hosebay at the Ellerslie stabling block but course vets and stipendiary stewards were satisfied it was only a superficial wound and cleared him to start.
Laing said VETRON would return to his owners farm tomorrow for his winter spell with a plan to resume training in June.
Owners Isabel and Alistaire Barker were eagerly awaiting VEYRON'S arrival.
"Jethrow, I mean VEYRON, will be coming home now and I'm looking forward to having him home, "Isabel Barker said.
"He's just such an amazing animal and we are so proud of him. We've had an amazing season. We're a really good team and we're all just so rapt for Rogan."