Kiwi Cups Contender Coming to Australia Minus Trainer

Media Release - Tuesday September 28

Rotorua trainer Bill Pomare has waited his entire life to have a horse good enough to compete in a Gr.1 Melbourne Cup (3200m), and now that he has, COVID-19 has denied him the chance to be there in person.

Pomare is targeting the Gr.1 Caulfield (2400m) and Melbourne Cups with Ocean Billy, who booked his ticket across the Tasman when he won the Gr.1 Auckland Cup (3200m) in March.

Ocean Billy wins the Aucukland Cup - image Trish Dunell

“It would have been completely out of our reach had he not won the Auckland Cup. It was a blessing that we won that and we could afford to send him over to Melbourne,” Pomare said.

“Just having him in those races is going to be pretty special. I think he is a better than average two-miler so it gives him a good shot at the Melbourne Cup.”

With the trans-Tasman travel bubble still intact at the time of winning the Auckland Cup, Pomare was excited to be able to join his charge on a trip of a lifetime over to Melbourne in the spring.


However, with the Delta variant of COVID-19 causing lockdowns on both sides of the Tasman, the bubble has been popped and with minimal chance of attaining an MIQ spot on either side of the Tasman, Pomare has elected to stay home and transfer Ocean Billy to expat New Zealand trainer Chris Waller.

While disappointed he won’t be able to be present for the big occasion, Pomare said the opportunity to have a horse compete in two of Australasia’s most revered races was too good of an opportunity to turn down.

“He is booked to fly out next Wednesday on the 6th (of October) and will join Chris Waller’s barn in Melbourne and race in the Caulfield Cup on the 16th,” Pomare said.

“I have waited a long time but I never thought I would have a horse racing in Australia, let alone compete in races like the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups.

“We are a bit gutted that we can’t be there. Both Suzie (wife) and I had big plans of being there and enjoying the atmosphere.

“The fact that we have spent a lot of time with this guy and to then suddenly send him away and have to watch it from this side of the Tasman is a bit depressing.

“But he is going to be in good hands and will be given every opportunity and we will just try and enjoy it.

“At our stage in life you don’t get these opportunities and you have got to take them. I know I could have kept him here and had a shot at a couple of weight-for-age races, but those races (in Melbourne) are the ultimate and when you qualify for a race like that you have got to go.”

Ocean Billy last raced in the Gr.1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m) at Hastings earlier this month, where he finished 11th, and will have one final run at Te Rapa on Friday for Pomare before he transfers to Waller’s Melbourne satellite stable.

“He didn’t really get a run in the Tarzino unfortunately. He was never put in the race and never got a chance to get his stride going and stretch out,” Pomare said.

“It was a bit disappointing, but he has come through it really well, I am very pleased with him.

“He will probably run over a mile at Te Rapa (on Friday). I was thinking of running him at Hastings over 2000m but it looks like there is a storm heading Hastings way so I think the best option is to go to Te Rapa.

“Even with a bit of rain around Te Rapa, it never gets really bad, plus he does like it there.” – NZ Racing Desk

More Reading...
Shamexpress Mare Wins Wanganui Cup
Underrated New Plymouth mare Zola Express captured the biggest win of her burgeoning career when she claimed the Listed Steelform Roofing Group Wanganui Cup (2040m).
Sad Passing of Champion Sire Pivotal
Cheveley Park Stud have announced sad news overnight with the passing of their champion sire Pivotal at age 28.
Coolmore Ireland Announce 2022 Fees
Coolmore Ireland have announced their fees for 2022 with the roster headed by Wootton Bassett (GB) at a fee of €150,000 (A$234,341), the proven Group I sire currently in Australia covering his first book of mares here at a fee of $71,500.
Shocking's Son Dragon Storm Adds Another 2-Miler
A New Zealand Cup winner, by a Melbourne Cup winner, out of a dual Auckland Cup winner, who is a daughter of a three-time winner at the highest level in America, what’s not to like about Dragon Storm at two miles.
Third Stakes Win for Written Tycoon's Enthaar
One time Golden Slipper favourite Enthaar scored a decisive win in the Listed Doveton Stakes (1000m) to credit Emirates Park with its second stakes-winner on the day at Caulfield.
Blue Blood Frankel Mare Wins G3 Summoned Stakes
Juddmonte Farm’s Frankel has had an amazingly successful year in 2021 finishing as the Champion Sire for GB and Ireland for the first time and adding a new stakes-winner to his tally at Caulfield on Saturday when talented mare Steinem (GB) took out the Group III MRC Summoned Stakes (1600m).
Sound (GER) Defends His Title in Zipping Classic
Melbourne Cup third Spanish Mission failed to provide the perfect farewell for Glen Boss in the $750,000 Group II Zipping Classic (2400m) at Caulfield on Saturday that went to the defending champion Sound (GER).
New Metro winner for Rebel Dane
With placings at his first three starts, the Gary Portelli trained Rebel Shadow was overdue for a win and got the job done at Canterbury last night giving Glen Eden Stud’s Rebel Dane a new metropolitan winner.
Sires With Winners - Friday November 26
Here is the full list of 64 stallions which had winners throughout Australasia on Friday with winners and result details.
First Breeders Cup Winner for Fastnet Rock
Champion sire Fastnet Rock has had Group I winners all over the world, but achieved a new milestone for himself when his exciting two year-old filly Pizza Bianca captured the Group I Breeders’ Cup Turf Fillies (1m) at Del Mar on Friday.