The Stephen McKee-trained Make Time (NZ) (Makfi) broke maiden ranks on Wednesday with a comfortable victory at Avondale in testing conditions.
The three-year-old gelding, who races in the Go Racing silks for the Penrhyn Syndicate, had been building up to the win running third in each of his three previous starts before racing was put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We had to ease off him because of lockdown,” McKee said. “He did have that fitness edge and I was pretty sure he would go alright I just wasn’t sure about the race conditions with the heavy track.”
Ridden by Sam Spratt, Make Time settled midfield and enjoyed a patient ride with Spratt starting to weave through runners with 600m to go. Once clear coming out of the turn Make Time accelerated to win the Auckland Alarms 1100 by 2-1/4 lengths.
“He couldn’t have won much better,” McKee said. “He won very well and he has always shown a bit of ability he just needed the strength to go with it.
“It is always great when you think they can win and they do.”
While there are no confirmed plans for Make Time, McKee is looking forward to the future with the son of Makfi who he feels will progress nicely following Wednesday’s win.
“We will just take him through the grades and let him find his way,” he said. “I have always thought he is better than just a straight heavy track horse so we will keep taking the next step with him.”
Bred by Go Racing and L J Shannon, Make Time is out of the Al Akbar mare Island Time, who has also produced five winners from six named foals including the stakes winner North and South.