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Melody Belle Wins Gr1 Empire Rose Stakes

Friday, 1st November 2019

J: O P Bosson
T: J W Richards
W: 57 kgs
S: Commands
D: Meleka Belle
J: Craig Williams
T: M Ellerton & S Zahra
W: 57 kgs
S: Lonhro
D: Nakaaya
J: M Zahra
T: K M Keys
W: 57 kgs
S: Lope De Vega
D: Lemon Reef
J: D Oliver
T: D R Brideoake
W: 57 kgs
S: High Chaparral
D: Glitzabeel

  • Track: Flemington
  • Race: $1,000,000 Gr1 Empire Rose Stakes (1600m)
  • Winner: 5YO mare Melody Belle (Commands-Meleka Belle, by Iffraaj)
  • Placings: 4YO mare Aristia & 6YO mare Spanish Reef
  • Winning Sire: Commands (Danehill-Cotehele House, by My Swanee)
  • Stud Farm: Darley
  • Trainer: Jamie Richards
  • Jockey: Opie Bosson
  • Race record: 15 wins and 3 placings from 25 starts for $2,514,418 in earnings
  • Sales Info: $57,500 yearling at the 2016 NZB NYSS
  • Vendor: Haunui Farm

At Flemington in Melbourne, deceased Darley stallion Commands (Danehill-Cotehele House, by My Swanee) celebrated yet another Gr1 victory in 2019 when superstar 5YO mare Melody Belle (Commands-Meleka Belle, by Iffraaj) swept down the centre of the Flemington track and stormed past her rivals to comfortably take out the $1,000,000 Gr1 Empire Rose Stakes (1600m). 4YO Lonhro mare Aristia hugged the rails on turning and sustained a powerful run to the line but was quite simply denied by a Champion with 1.5-lengths separating them at the post. 6YO mare Spanish Reef was a further 1.75-lengths adrift in third. Now with a world-leading 7 Gr1 wins in 2019 (and 10 overall), Melody Belle further bolstered her record to 15 wins (including the Gr1 Livamol Classic, Gr1 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes, Gr1 Haunui Farm Group One WFA, Gr1 Waikato Sprint, Gr1 Windsor Park Plate (twice), Gr1 Tarzino Trophy, Gr1 Manawatu Sires Produce Stakes, Gr2 Foxbridge Plate, Gr2 BRC Sires' Produce Stakes, Gr3 Mongolian Khan Trophy & Listed Karaka Million) and 3 placings from 25 starts for $2,514,418 in earnings. Melody Belle was purchased for $57,500 by Te Akau Racing principal David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna Bloodstock at the 2016 NZB NYSS from the draft of Haunui Farm. Proud jockey Opie Bosson noted on return to scale, "It just goes to show how good and versatile she is. As I said back home [in NZ] she just doesn't know when to not try." Commenting on his run in transit he added, "I was always travelling beautifully but she was three-deep the whole trip so she didn't do it the easy way, but she relaxed beautifully and turning for home she was revelling through the going."

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