Day At The Track

Nostra Villa withdrawn from Breeders Crown

09:30 AM 08 Aug 2018 NZST
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Nostra Villa
Nostra Villa
Stuart McCormick Photo

Breeders Crown champion Nostra Villa won’t be back to defend her title later this month.

Trainer Emma Stewart said last season’s juvenile pacing filly final winner was feeling the effects of a hard season so has gone for a spell.

"She has done a lot of hard racing and it was time for her to have a break,” said Stewart.

That still leaves Stewart with four fillies in the three-year-old series as she charges toward the culminaton of her record-breaking season, with the Victorian heats for the three-year-old fillies at Shepparton on Thursday night.

Even without Nostra Villa the stable has the warm favourite for the series in Speak No Evil, who is rated the stable’s best chance of the whole Breeders Crown, even after drawing the outside of the front line in her heat on Thursday.

“She has gone from strength to strength,” says Stewart.

“She trialed really well last week and has come on from the Vicbred win so she is clearly the best of our chances in her division and probably in the overall two and three-year-old series.”

The Victorian fillies heats kick off with the juveniles at Ballarat tonight and Stewart has Vicbred quinellamates Kualoa and Two Times Bettor in the same heat.

“They seem to be doing that a lot these days, putting the two good stablemates in the same heat and I think they should be split.

“But they are both ready to go good races. Kualoa is the one to beat this week and, and this stage, the best of our chances in the final.”

The glamour boys of the freshman division have their turn at Kilmore on Wednesday night with Vicbred winner Centanario up against his runner-up on that occasion in Nostra Ideal and Bathurst Gold Crown winner College Chapel.

An interesting Victorian debutant is Whereyabinboppin, who has joined the in-form Tim Butt stable after being unbeaten in three starts.

Stewart dominates the other heat with Hurricane Harley and Hardhitter going head to head.

Michael Guerin

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