With the dawning of the new season and Racing Minister Winston Peter's announcement of increased stakes for racing, New Zealand Bloodstock is keeping the ball rolling by doubling the bonus cheques on offer for the 2008-9 New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year Series.
There will now be $50,000 in bonuses presented to the winner of the prestigious Filly of the Year title, with $40,000 awarded to the winning owners and $10,000 to the winning trainer.
As in previous years, the three-year-old fillies will compete across a series of ten black-type races, being awarded points for wins or placings in each race. The distances range from 1200 metres to the 2400 metres of the $350,000 Group 1 New Zealand Oaks in March 2009. The first race in the Series, the Group 3 Gold Trail Stakes in association with Hutchinsons (1200m), will be hosted by Hawkes Bay Racing Inc. on their Stoney Bridge Stakes Day on Saturday 20 September.
Just last Friday the reigning NZB Filly of the Year Insouciant was crowned at the Mercedes Racing Awards. The daughter of Cambridge Stud sire Keeper was bred by Peter and Philip Vela from their stakes-performed Palace Music mare, Loudenne.
Insouciant's path to Series glory started just under one year ago with a striking debut win at Taupo. The highlight of the seven Series races she contested was undoubtedly her all-the-way win in the Group 1 New Zealand Bloodstock One-Thousand Guineas under champion jockey, Michael Walker. This was bolstered by her win in the Group 3 Ezibuy Eulogy Stakes and a second placing in the Group 1 Sir Tristram Fillies Classic.
The NZB Filly of the Year Series Trophy
Insouciant is trained by Mark Walker, who has demonstrated a knack for producing Series winners being the trainer of the 2006-07 winner Princess Coup and the 2005-06 winner Shikoba.
Since its inception in 1972, the time honoured series has seen the likes of Savannah Success, Alacrity, Solveig, Phillipa Rush, Noble Heights, La Mer, Mop and Tang add to their value as future broodmares plus take home the magnificent trophy