Bright future tipped for Riviera Rebel

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  • March 15, 2024
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Bright future tipped for Riviera Rebel

By Joshua Smith, LOVERACING.NZ News Desk

Graham Eade is excited about the prospects of his promising three-year-old Riviera Rebel, who he is hoping can take the next step in his career at Wingatui on Sunday.

The son of Pure Champion has surprised his Riverton trainer with his precocity, having won one and placed in three of his seven starts to date, including a pleasing third placing behind Aberlour and Quintabelle in the Listed Southland Guineas (1600m) at Ascot Park last month.

“He went better than what I thought he would last start,” Eade said. “I didn’t think he was quite up to that at this stage, so it was pleasing to see him get that stakes placing.”

Eade races the gelding in partnership with his breeder Phil Jeffreys, who sent the Southland trainer a video of Riviera Rebel when he was a juvenile asking if he was interested in taking the youngster on, and Eade didn’t hesitate in accepting the offer.

“I have got quite a lot of my horses off him (Jeffreys),” Eade said. “We keep in pretty close contact and he rang me about the horse and asked if I would be interested. They sent me a video of him and he was a real nice mover in the paddock.

“He has come a long way in a short time and I never thought he would. He has been a bit of a handful and if it wasn’t for a good farrier and the fella who broke him in, we probably wouldn’t be at this stage, they have done a great job with him as he has been an awkward fella.

“He is getting quieter all the time, he is starting to grow up. I think he is only going to get better, he is a stayer in the making.”

Riviera Rebel was given a freshen-up following his Southland Guineas run and Eade has been pleased with his progress ahead of the Icon Interior Construction (1600m) on Sunday.

He has had a little break since the Guineas, he is looking great and his work has been good. I am looking forward to it.”

Eade doesn’t have any set plans for his gelding post Sunday and said he wants to take things quietly with his charge.

“We are taking him one step at a time because I don’t want to push him over the edge,” he said.

Eade will also give stablemate Gintys Girl the biggest test in her career to date when she tackles the RMG Publicans Cup (1500m).

The daughter of Ghibellines takes a runner-up performance into Sunday where she will jump from barrier five with 54kg on her back, a far less intimidating prospect for Eade than her alternative option.

“I thought it was a good, tough run last start,” he said. “She had an awful draw and she toughed it out really well and I think her work has improved.

“They gave her two points (for her placing), which put her (rating) up to 65. We nominated her for the 65 mile, but she was going to be carrying 60 kilos whereas she would only carry 54kg in the Cup. It is quite a big drop in weight for her.

“We think she will get to 2000m in time. We will just see how she goes on Sunday and that will dictate what we do with her at Riverton.”

Meanwhile, Eade said his stakes performer Riviera Rock is enjoying retirement after his racing career was cut short in January following a tendon injury.

The nine-year-old gelding was a consistent performer for Eade, winning seven and placing in 19 of his 66 starts, including placing in the Listed Dunedin Gold Cup (2400m) on three occasions.

“He is in the paddock now and he is gleaming. We are just trying to find a good home for him,” Eade said.

“He has earned $250,000 so he has done pretty well.” – LOVERACING.NZ NEWS Desk




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