Talented New Zealand pacer Master Moonlite has changed hands.
Previously prepared by top Christchurch based conditioner Cran Dalgety, the Art Major –Miss Moonlite has been purchased by clients of emerging Victorian horseman Mattie Craven.
And the Queensland winter carnival now looms as a genuine target.
Craven, based at Ecklin South, near Terang, has circled the Queensland Derby at Albion Park on July 21 as a major target for his latest Kiwi recruit.
“We had an opportunity to secure a quality paerformer like him and we jumped at it and the Queensland winter carnival is a distinct possibility. He’s only arrived this week and hopefully we can get him readied for the trip north.” Craven said.
Master Moonlite is no stranger to Australian after competing last season throughout the Australasian Breeders Crown series in Victoria.
He managed a first-up victory at Kilmore before being placed third behind King Of Swing and Colt Thirty One in the semi-final at Bendigo.
In the Gr.1 $285,000 final, Master Moonlite never threatened and finished 11th behind King Of Swing.
Master Moonlite has won twice while being placed on four other occasions this season prior to his sale.
He was scratched from the recent Gr.2 $43,000 Vero Flying Stakes at Addington on March 23 owing to the sale.
Craven is no stranger to campaigning in Brisbane after bringing another former New Zealand three-year-old in Kimani for a shot at the 2016 Queensland Derby.
Kimani finished 4th behind Catcha Lefty.
“Obviously the Breeders Crown is a key target but the Queensland campaign fits the schedule and I’m pretty keen to give it a go, hopefully everything works out well and we’ll be there.
“He’s raced all the high end opponents throughout his career so he’s got the natural talent and a Queensland Derby is a good fit.
“I haven’t confirmed whether it will be just him or others making the trip north, that will be decided a little closer to time.”
The 2018 Racing Queensland winter carnival officially begins on May 23 and concludes on July 27.
Chris Barsby | RQ Web News | April 11