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Balcairn trainers John and Karen Parsons will kick-off the three-year-old campaigns for Touchabeel and Sombra Deamor in the Barneswood Farm Stakes Day 19th October (1250m) at Ashburton on Friday and their performances in the race will help dictate their spring paths.
Touchabeel had the four starts as a juvenile and finished fourth on debut in the Listed Welcome Stakes (1000m) and while her trainers would have liked her to have developed a little more over winter, they are pleased with her heading into Friday.
The daughter of Savabeel finished third in her 850m trial at Rangiora earlier this month and Karen Parsons, who co-bred and co-owns the filly in partnership with Waikato Stud, admits four debutants in the field adds a bit of uncertainty to the mix.
“She is working quite well,” she said. “I’m a little bit disappointed she didn’t grow a little bit more while she was out, but she doesn’t know she is little, she thinks she is 10 foot tall. She is the boss of the paddock.
“We were quite happy with the trial, but we don’t know how good those other ones are in the race tomorrow.
“She will go well because she has trained on and we will get a good line on her there.”
All going to plan Touchabeel will follow a stakes path for the rest of the spring, with the Gr.1 Gavelhouse New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) being the ultimate target.
“We have tentatively got them booked in, but it all depends on how well she performs,” Parsons said. “We have got the Canterbury Belle (Listed, 1200m) next and then we will see what happens, but the 1000 Guineas is the main goal.”
Parsons will also lineup Sombra Deamor in the same race and she is excited about the debut of the close relation to Hong Kong Group One-winning sprinter D B Pin.
The daughter of Pins had two trials as a juvenile and Parsons is pleased she has taken a patient approach with the filly.
“We had her going at two, she has matured mentally a lot more now. In the head department she was quite a loose unit.
“She has just improved a heap with an extra six months.”
Another link that Parsons is excited about is the great association she and husband John have had with Waikato Stud’s deceased stallion Pins.
“We do have a great record with the Pins’,” she said. “We were going through them just recently and I don’t think we have had a Pins that was a flop.
“We have had Megapins and Sharp Prick. The ones that we have had have been good horses to us.
“Without a doubt he would be our favourite stallion.”