Ranting rules in thrilling Blue Sapphire

Ranting (NZ) (Zoustar) shed his tag as one of the country’s best maidens with a brave victory in Wednesday’s Gr.3 Blue Sapphire Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield for trainers Leon and Troy Corstens.

In a three-horse field, the Westbury Stud graduate dug deep to get the better of Hanseatic by a half neck, with a short head away to race favourite Anders in a stirring finish.

“I thought he was going to (finish) a bit disappointing but he took that time to really balance up and I love the way he ran through the line,” Troy Corstens said.

“Just before the corner I thought he was going quite good but just again he just lacked that really good smarts to come around the corner and put them away. He’s wound up and done it in the end.”

The colt broke his maiden at start number six, but had previously been stakes placed on three occasions.

Ranting will now head to the Gr.1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) on Derby Day

“So much hard work goes into these horses and there’s a great group of owners in him,” Corstens said.

“He’s just an outstanding looking colt and to be able to win these races is what the Australian market is all about.

“You try and build their value and that’s why you don’t go back to a maiden, it does nothing for your value but a race like that just bumps you up.”

Bred by Gerry Harvey at his New Zealand operation Westbury Stud, Ranting is the first winner from Vanilla Ice Crèam, a placed More than Ready daughter of Group Two performer Villa Bled, a sister to Gr.1 Blue Diamond (1200m) winner Danelagh and from a family that has produced Group One winners Vengeance of Rain, Dizelle and Pinot.

Vanilla Ice Cream has a two-year-old colt by exciting young Westbury Stud stallion Tarzino, who was snapped up for $95,000 at New Zealand Bloodstock’s Book 1 Yearling Sale earlier this year by the Corstens Malua Bloodstock.

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