New debut juvenile winner for Pierata

The good run being enjoyed by first-season stallion Pierata continued at Doomben on Wednesday with the Chris Munce-trained Carravilla recording an impressive debut victory.

Double figure odds off a Doomben trial fourth, the promising filly was a little green but still strong to the line saluting by 1.25l.

Carravilla – who was sold by Goodwood Farm to Munce Racing for $130,000 at the 2023 Inglis Classic Yearling Sale – is one of the 115 live foals in Pierata’s first crop.

She is the fifth winner for the G1 All Aged S. winner who has been represented by five stakes performers including the G3 Chairman’s S.-winning, G1 Golden Slipper S. runner-up Coleman and the G3 Thoroughbred Breeders S. winner Tobeornottobe.

Chris Munce was taken by the style of Pierata’s yearlings and was happy to put his hand up for this filly who he said, “had a good walk and a nice look about her.”

“I liked the Pieratas, they are all good types and Carravilla is a very nice filly.”

“She is going to get stronger as she matures but she is just naturally talented and she picked up everything very quickly – she is very exciting.”

“I am not sure where she goes to from here,” he continued – “whether we pick out a race for her over the carnival or put her in the paddock, I will see how she comes through this run.”

One of the bidders on Carravilla at the sales was Laurel Oak’s Louis Mihalyka who, along with Goodwood Farm, Rhiannon Bloodstock and D and C Jeffery, bred the filly out of their mare Tinto Fino (NZ) (Ocean Park {NZ}).

Liking her enough to buy her back, Mihalyka did however underestimate her sales ring value – dropping out as she surpassed the six-figure mark with the thought that on type and pedigree she would take a while to make it to the track.

Carravilla as a yearling | Image courtesy of Inglis

But here she is as an April 2-year-old not only racing, but winning – “a pleasant surprise!” said Mihalyka who had missed the race whilst in transit – figuring out that something good had happened as his phone began to ping.

With Pierata’s best form coming at three and beyond, Mihalyka did not send a mare to him in the hope of producing an early type – noting that Tinto Fino hails from “a family of slow-maturers.”

“It is a good mating but physically I thought this filly would take a decent amount of time,” he said – happy to be proven wrong as reports from the stable suggested that “she was ahead of schedule.”

Mihalyka had cause to be very excited about Carravilla’s dam Tinto Fino who he purchased for $110,000 at the 2017 New Zealand Bloodstock National Yearling Sale.

A member of the Chris Waller stable, she was also expected to need time but she too debuted as an April 2-year-old though sadly without the same luck.

“I was in India at the time so I remember exactly where I was when watching that race,” Mihalyka said, the memory sticking as the run contained so much promise.

Finishing off strongly having raced wide in an 1100-metre maiden at Echuca, Tinto Fino had her owners excited with talk of Queensland winter carnival races in store.

But that joy quickly turned to dismay as Tinto Fino was found to be sore after the race – the first text Mihalyka receiving in India alerting him to a possible fracture in the knee, the second a few hours later even more serious.

“She had shattered her knee and saving her life was the only possibility, there was no chance of her ever racing again.”

Twelve months of rehabilitation followed; Tinto Fino at times a bit sore and sorry but fast-forward to now and she is sound and well – and making a lovely contribution.

Although Mihalyka admits that there was concern that nothing much was really happening for her; Tinto Fino due to be listed for sale with her 2022-born North Pacific filly had to be put down just last week.

“I’d say we will have a change of heart now,” he said, noting that not only is Carravilla promising, but so is Tinto Fino’s 3-year-old Edited By (Written By) – that Michael Freedman-trained colt winning his last two starts at Newcastle.

Scratched from a couple of recent black-type assignments after drawing wide gates, Edited By was also a good sales result for Laurel Oak; fetching $280,000 at the 2022 Inglis Classic Yearling Sale.

Whilst not in the ownership of Carravilla, she is a gift that will keep on giving to her breeders who were persuaded by Aquis – then home to Pierata – to pay a bit extra for a lifetime breeding right rather than just securing one nomination.

“That looks to be a valuable asset now,” Mihalyka said, happy to have used that right in a very good way – Tinto Fino last spring foaling a colt by Pierata whilst the 2021 nomination was used with Mull Over (So You Think {NZ}).

Her 2-year-old by Rebel Dane had not raced at that stage but we all now know her as Fireburn who has made her way to Japan on the back of her big-race successes in the G1 Golden Slipper S. and the G1 Sires Produce S.

Mull Over produced a handsome colt by Pierata, one bought-back by Laurel Oak for $460,000 at the recent Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale.

Lot 171 – Pierata x Mull Over (colt) | Image courtesy of Inglis

A half-sister to the multiple city winner Monasterio (NZ) (Savabeel), Tinto Fino hails from the family of the outstanding race and broodmare Triscay (Marscay) – meaning that Carravilla can boast amongst her relations the Group 1 winners La Baraka (Euclase), Alizee (Sepoy) and Astern, as well as the tough Group 1 campaigners Demerger (Saithor {USA}) and Defier (Dehere {USA}).

This article was written by Kristin Manning for TTR AusNZ.