Kelt Capital Stakes
|Group I race|
Hawke's Bay, New Zealand
|Race type||Thoroughbred - Flat racing|
|Website||Hawke's Bay Racing|
|Distance||2040m (10 furlongs)|
|Qualification||Three-year-olds and up|
|Weight||Weight for Age|
The Spring Classic (formerley Kelt Capital Stakes) is a Thoroughbred horse race run at Hastings Racecourse in Hawke's Bay and is New Zealand's richest weight-for-age horse race. It is run at a distance of 2040m and in 2010 will carry prizemoney of NZ$250,000.
The race was sponsored by Kelt Capital Limited, and in particular the owner thereof Sam Kelt, a strong supporter of New Zealand and particularly Hawke's Bay racing. The growth in prizemoney was substantial in the decade up to 2008. In 2000 it was worth $250,000; in 2002 it was the equal richest race in New Zealand at $500,000 and in 2004 it was New Zealand's first million-dollar race for more than a decade. The race was worth $2,000,000 in 2007 and 2008, but the stake had to be reduced to $1,200,000 in 2009 as that level was deemed unsustainable. The 2010 running is to be worth $250,000, which is below several major races in New Zealand, but still slightly ahead in terms of weight-for-age races. The race has been renamed the Spring Classic after Kelt Capital pulled their sponsorship.
The Kelt is run on the first Saturday in October, along with two other Group features, the Hawke's Bay Guineas for three year olds and the recently bolstered GR Kelt Memorial. The weather in the Hawke's Bay's means the track conditions are usually excellent.
The race is now regarded as New Zealand's premier weight-for-age race and has attracted interest from overseas, most notably with subsequent world champion miler Starcraft who ran second in 2004.
Winners of the Kelt Capital Stakes
|2009||Vosne Romanee||Buddy Lammas||Jeff Lynds||2:08.42|
|2008||Princess Coup||Opie Bosson||Mark Walker||2:04.58|
|2007||Princess Coup||Noel Harris||Mark Walker||2:04.16|
|2006||Legs||Lisa Cropp||Kevin Gray||2:03.82|
|2005||Xcellent||Michael Coleman||Mike & Paul Moroney||2:03.21|
|2004||Balmuse||Jamie Bullard||Kevin Myers||2:05.03|
|2003||Distinctly Secret||Opie Bosson||Mark Walker||2:03.64|
|2002||Prized Gem||Michael Rodd||Murray Baker||2:04.10|
|2001||Cinder Bella||Lance O'Sullivan||Karen Zimmerman||2:03.31|
|2000||The Message||Linda Ballantyne||John Ralph||2:03.91|
|1999||Cent Home||David Walker||Jim Wallace||2:02.16|
|1998||Just Call Me Sir||Trudy Collett||Moira Murdoch||2:04.06|
|1997||Moss Downs||Michael Coleman||Chris McNab||2:03.63|
|1996||Love Dance||Gary Grylls||Bev & Ken Kelso||2:03.41|
|1995||Italian Saint||Tony Allan||Noel Eales||2.03.41|
|1994||Solvit||David Walsh||Moira Murdoch||2.00.16|
|1993||Calm Harbour||Lance O'Sullivan||Noel Eales||1.59.70|