Stylish First Win for Firriato (NZ)

Pencarrow four-year-old Firriato (NZ) (Almanzor) cleared maiden ranks in style with a quality performance in Thursday’s $18,500 Entain – NZB Insurance Pearl Series Race (1400m) at Rotorua.

Placed in two of her six starts as a three-year-old last season, Firriato hinted that she had come back bigger and better when she kicked off her new campaign with impressive victories in both of her trials.

She brought that winning form to raceday on Thursday, winning stylishly in the hands of top jockey Opie Bosson.

After jumping evenly from gate two, Firriato slid forward to take up a handy position in fourth spot, skimming the running rail.

A gap opened at the top of the straight and Firriato capitalised, quickening smartly to pounce and take a clear lead with less than 250 metres remaining.

Margalit (NZ) (Ego) charged home out wide on the track to provide a late scare, but Firriato responded to the challenge and held on to win by a head.

From seven starts, Firriato has now recorded a win and two thirds, earning $14,840 in prize-money along with a Pearl Series bonus from Thursday’s win.

Firriato was bred by Pencarrow Thoroughbreds Ltd and is raced by Sir Peter Vela. She is trained by Te Akau Racing’s Mark Walker and Sam Bergerson.

She is one of 50 winners from 111 southern-hemisphere-bred runners for Cambridge Stud stallion Almanzor – a list that is headed by Group One winner Manzoice, black-type winners Cheval D’Or (NZ) and Dynastic (NZ) and 10 other stakes performers.

The dam of Firriato is the homebred Pencarrow mare Deliciano (NZ) (Darci Brahma), who won six races and placed in the Listed Metropolitan Trophy (2500m). She is now the dam of two winners from four foals to race.

Deliciano is a daughter of Santagostino (Giant’s Causeway), a Group Two-winning sister to three stakes performers including the Group One heroine Vapour Trail (NZ) (Jetball).

Deliciano produced colts by Reliable Man and Frosted in 2020 and 2022, and she was served by U S Navy Flag last spring.