Vadamos paddock shot

Vadamos Mare Bounces Back To Claim Group 1 Prize

La Crique (5m Vadamos – Destiny Cove, by Dubai Destination) returned to form to gain her second top-flight success in Saturday’s Group 1 Otaki-Maori Classic.

Runner-up in the 2023 running, the Simon and Katrina Alexander-trained mare was partnered by Matthew Cameron for the first time on Sunday and was pushed along behind the leaders turning for home. Quickening to lead soon after, she was ridden out to score by a length and a quarter, with another length and three quarters back to the favourite Desert Lightning (Pride Of Dubai) in third.

“It’s the first time I’ve had the shakes for a while,” Katrina Alexander said after the race. “Inch by inch, we’ve improved her, tried to get her back on track and tried to get her back to the horse that we knew as a three-year-old. So this is hugely satisfying and we couldn’t be happier.”

“I’d never sat on her before, but she makes my job easy,” the winning rider added. “My job was to follow the favourite, and she just tracked along beautifully. She’s so athletic and she’s a little machine. She felt super.”

Owned and bred by Mrs JK and JT Cassin, La Crique gained her first Group 1 win when impressing in the Arrowfield Plate as a three-year-old. The now seven-time winner has placed in four Group 1’s and earned $956,777 in prize money.

La Crique is one of two Group 1 performers on the flat by Vadamos, who is responsible for another 12 flat Stakes horses. The Grange Stud sire’s first national hunt runners are led by Grade 1 hurdler King Of Kingsfield and Grade 2 runner-up Matata. His first national-hunt bred crop are now two-year-olds.