Whether trained by Bruno Grizzetti as a two year old or Alduino and Stefano Botti at three one thing has remained consistent for Scuderia Blueberry’s home bred superstar Aria Importante, she simply loves San Siro. Twelve races eight wins all in Milan only four defeats three in Rome and one second place in last years Gran Criterium to Vis A Vis who she got the better of by a head on Saturday in the Premio Chiusura (1400 metres) now only listed but once a group 2.If any horse suffered the closure of San Siro due to the Japanese beetle infestation it was the Blueberry owned filly. The big question they must be asking is whether to send Aria to one of their two studs or keep one of the best seven furlong three year olds in training for another year. By Twilight Son out of the Orpen mare Aria Di Festa herself a high class racemare for the Scuderia, she will have a big choice of potential stallions to choose from. Aria Importante and Wakanaka lit up the covid bligthed 2020 two year old campaign in Italy with a series of dazzling performances over 1000 and 1200 metres. Grizzetti let her take her chance in the Gran Criterium over 1500 metres where on the heavy ground she could not match Vis A Vis. Grizzly then got into a dispute with the Milan training centre which ended with his team being moved to Varese and the Bezzera’s removing most of their horses to Team Botti. Nevertheless after a slow start and some big investment Grizzetti Galoppo is having their best season since 2013 with six weeks of the season left 75 winners and €1 million Euro in prizemoney.There is no braver filly than Aria Importante (OR 110 after this) who on ground she dislikes ground out a victory from Vis A Vis giving the 2020 champion two year old two kilos in the process. Bias Power(Slade Power) a three year old filly showing remarkable improvement in the past few months was two lenghts away in third with Blazing Comet brother of Bago and Maxios a distant fourth. Cima Emergency never got going on the terrain with Branca practically pulling him up.
Most of the other highlights from the weekend were from some excellent two year old races. Still in San Siro Que Tempesta(Territories-Tipperary Boutique)trained by Roberto Biondi and bred by The Lillingston family of Mounte Coote Stud in Kilmallock was a good winner of the Premio Dormelletto over 1800 metres.All five runners had won their only start and this half brother to numerous winners including the Group 2 Premio Dormello runner up Identity Run Fast will be giving Roberto Biondi dreams of classic glory in 2022.Runner up here was Lord Sakay bred by Macha Bllodstock in Kildare and third the Turlough Boylan bred Cime Tempestose who may need a longer trip.The latter is a half brother to the Vittorio Di Capua winner Amore Hass later named Xiang Bai Qi the winner of over 700,000 euro between Italy and Hong Kong.The big nursery the Castello Sfforesco (1600m)was won by the Alduino Botti trained Vento D’Estate a son of Dabirsim and Mi Raccomando winner of the Regina Elena(1000 guineas 2017).
Rome on Sunday featured two listed juvenile races one for each sex. The Criterium Femminile regularly throws up fillies with classic pretensions and Prichi (Awtaad-Naseej) is certainly one of those.The Grand dam Sortita was a full sister to the German Derby winners Samum and Schiaparelli and the German Oaks winner Salva Regina so connections will be thinking of Oaks for a filly who showed a lot of improvemnent from her debut win. We should not get carried away however as it wasn’t the best version of the race ever and Prichi had the not inconsiderable talent of Cristain Demuro in the saddle.The closeness of the Hungarian invader Different Illusion (Marco Ghiani) with Macasai a recent Rome maiden winner third only adds to our doubts but Prichi has real promise.
Demurino gave a master class on the favourite in the colts equivalent the Premio Rumon also over 1500 metres.Riding Baghed clearly the best horse in the race runner up in the Robert Papin(G2) the Primi Passi(G3) and close in the Morny(G1) Vincenzo Fassi’s colt only doubt was stamina. Demuro took the bull by the horns,taking the initiative from the start setting a modest pace and won coast to coast in a time one and a half seconds slower than the fillies race. Baghed has been a wonderful servant for Fazio and indeed Twilight Son who had a super weekend in Italy with Aria Importante’s win in the Chiusura. Runner Up Bahja Del Sol(bred by Joe O Leary) ran his usual honest race without ever troubling the winner who once again showed us what a loss Windstormblack is to Italian and European racing. Can Baghed equal Aria in his three year old season, only time will tell.
The younger of the Demuro brothers who loves Capannelle brought Bloody Love (Endo Botti and Rockhart Trading) home in the Handicap Principale over 1200 metres and Lucky Ambriel in the juvenile fillies maiden to complete a four timer. With his many victories in his homeland and well over 120 in France in 2021 is there a better jockey anywhere today.
Pisa staged its first big winter meeting with two handicap principlale’s the Galileo Galilei (2200m) won by Kadabration (Excelebration) and the Federico Regoli(1500m) won by Ranger In Paradise (Holy Roman Emperor-Mooney Ridge). The dam is a full sister to four Oaks winners and also mother of Mooney Ridge third in the Jockey Club. Highland Reel has produced the Italian champion juvenile filly in Atamisque winner of the Dormello(G2) and in the Premio Dossa Dossi over 1500 metres another of his daughters Hello I Love You made an impressive debut. The Alduino Botti filly is a sister to Cassina De Pomm who also won the Dormello and is the dam of Carrobbio. In Siracusa the Moygaddy stud bred Star Alpha(Coulsty) won the nursery and Immortal Romance getting to be almost legendary in Sicily won his thirteenth race in the Meazza over 2,300 metres. December 8 is the big day in the Siracusan calendar and the Tally Ho bred son of Society Rock will be one of the favourites for the Francesco Farici(HPA) over course and distance.
On the breeding front in Italy in 2021 we had quite a renewal of stallions with Magician, Helmet, Lethal Force, Anjaal, Mukhadram and Wootons Colt among others joining those standing. In 2022 Magician after covering over 130 mares will return to Iraland to be replaced at Scuderia Andy Capp by the 2013 Epsom Derby winner Ruler of The World who with limited numbers has produced the likes of Iridessa, La Petite Cocu, Pineapple Express and the wonderful Spanish filly Maracay. Today Equos a top italian racing site reports that Markaz is to leave Derrinstown to stand at the Allevamento Renaccino in Siena. The Dark Angel’s best representatives in 2021 were Corazon winner of the Prix D’Arenberg(G3) before being third in the Flying Childers and the Ger Lyons trained Markaz Paname winner on his debut and then third in the Star Appeal stakes. In Italy the Yeomanstown bred stallion is represented by Brasilian Jet a three time winner who will be among the favourites for one of Siciily’s biggest races (see above) on December 8. Statistics up to this weekend shows Arcano twenty five winners of almost half a million euro leading the winnings table ahead of last years number one Sakhees Secret. The two year old money table sees El Kabeir ahead on €162,000 ahead of Gleneagles and Highland Reel. Arcano and Ravens Pass have had the most individual two year old winners but remember in Italy the season closes on New Years Eve.
Racing this week Tuesday Rome
Wednesday Varese and Livorno
Thursday Milan (final meeting of 2021 in San Siro)
Saturday Siracusa, Livorno and Treviso(NH)
Sunday Pisa and Roma (featuring the Buontalenta(LR£+f)The Roma Vecchia(LR 2800m) and the HPA Premio Nearco 1600m)
Monday Naples and Villacidro
Remember all the action can be seen live as well as all the stats on www.italianhorseracing.com
VIDEO: Cristian Demuro and Baghed win the Premio Rumon
VIDEO: Demuro and Prichi win the Criterium Femminile