Immortal Change proving bargain buy

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Immortal Change, rewarded with a sit-sprint finish to win at Addington on Friday, September 7, has the aim of winning a $7000 Met Multiplier bonus for the Mark Jones stable.

She’s had 10 starts at Addington since February, but this was her first win at Canterbury headquarters, after winning her maiden at Westport in March.

Immortal Change and Sam Ottley, wearing the Cancer Society Daffodil colours, run clear to win the Dyers Road ITM Mobile Pace at Addington on September 7. (Race Images photo).

The Multiplier is paid to any horse who has a minimum of 15 starts at Addington during a rolling 12-month period and has a win, or dead-heat, during the year.

“I think Grant Smith (owner) paid only $1000 for her so he’s having a bit of fun,” said trainer Mark Jones.

Immortal Change, a four-year-old daughter of 2008 New Zealand Cup winner Changeover (1:53.4, 29 wins & $2.4 million), has now won $23,365.

She’s picked up two wins and seven minor placings from 25 starts for Mr Smith, who earlier co-raced six-win mare Seven Point One.

Mr Smith, and wife Marilyn, operate Smithfield Raspberries at Ashburton.

Immortal Change has a bit going for her on pedigree on her maternal side, being a a great grand-daughter of champion mare Armalight (1:55.4 mile rate, 2000m, 18 wins & $277,520), the 1981 New Zealand Cup winner & 1982 NZ Harness Horse of the Year.

She’s the fourth foal, the second to race and first winner for her qualified but unraced Falcon Seelster dam Arma Phoenix.

Grand-dam Ultimate Arma (Holmes Hanover-Armalight) won one for the late Weedons trainer Jack Smolenski but has made her mark at stud, leaving 10 qualifiers and seven individual race-winners, including Dead Calm (1:58.3, nine NZ wins, two Aust. for $106,023), Arma May Zing (1:59, seven wins from 14 starts) and Cindi Arma (1:56.5, four wins from 19 starts), the latter two being a brother and sister to Arma Phoenix.

Arma The One (Badlands Hanover-Ultimate Arma), who won twice, is the dam of five Australian winners including Arma The Gun (1:51.9, eight wins from only 14 starts for $73,358), who ran third to Salty Robyn in the 2017 Gr. 2 Hondo Grattan 4YO pace at Menangle.

She’s also the dam of Arma Hotshot (1:55.6, five wins & $46,305), Arma Naughty (1:55.5, two wins) and Armalife (1:58.6, seven wins & $42,965).

Immortal Change stands for driver Sam Ottley, with owner Grant Smith, and wife Marilyn, looking on at Addington. (Race Images photo).

Armalight, who also won the 1983 Auckland Cup, was from another top filly in Ar Miss, who won eight including a NZ Oaks and NZ Sapling Stakes, and later became a NZ Broodmare of the Year.

This is also the family in recent decades of Excel Stride Stride (1:50.3, 28 wins and $769,494); former top WA filly Arma Xpress (1:56.5, 12 wins from 18 starts and $279,890), (Our) London Pride (1:51.6, US, 28 wins and $600,000), London Express (1:50.6, US, 32 wins and $350,00), Ohoka Punter (1:52.4, 25 wins incl. 2013 Northern Derby, $1 million earner), top Queensland pacer Majestic Mach (1:53.9, 35 wins & $976,397), former NZ 4YO Superstars Championship winner Bruzem (18 wins, 1:52.6, US & $178,925), and Spankem (p2, 1:54, five 2 and 3YO wins from 14 starts, $241,194).

Immortal Change, who came from last of the eight runners to win the Dyers Road ITM Mobile Pace for her latest win, picked the leaders up easily in the run home for Sam Ottley, who was sporting the Cancer Society Daffodil race colours.

She ran the mobile 2600m in 3:16.4, a solid 2:01.5 mile rate, providing Mark with his fifth training win of the new season, and Sam with her seventh driving win of the season.