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El Soldado Wins Gr1 Auckland Cup
At Ellerslie in New Zealand, Longspring Stud's beautifully bred stallion Colombia (Zabeel-Eight Carat, by Pieces Of Eight) celebrated an elite success when 9YO gelding El Soldado (Colombia-Zo'al, by Norman Pentaquad) scored by 0.75-length for trainer Phillip Devcich in the NZ$500,000 Gr1 Auckland Cup (3200m) for 3YO+, over 6YO mare Rose Of Virginia (Thorn Park-Centapin, by Pins) & 4YO gelding Sacred Master (Mastercraftsman-Trickle, by Storm Creek). El Soldado took his record to 7 wins and 13 placings from 68 starts for NZ$538,800 earnings. The veteran galloper made it fourth time lucky in the Auckland Cup when scoring a shock victory at the huge odds of 125-1. "This is the one we set him for and he peaked on the right day," trainer Phillip Devcich told NZ Racing Desk. "I told Darryl [jockey Darryl Bradley] that he would outstay them and that's what he's done. To win a Group One is unbelievable."