The Gerald Ryan-trained filly Melito claimed a gallant victory at Randwick on Saturday when she defeated an open field of rivals in the $500,000 Group 1 T J Smith Stakes (1200m).
The three-year-old Redoute’s Choice filly was ridden expertly by Blake Shinn, who held her back up until the final 200m, when she charged away from the pack leaving the six other 2010 T J Smith contenders in her wake.
Originally paid-up for and intended to start in the $150,000 Group 2 Sapphire Stakes (1200m) on Saturday, Melito was also accepted into the T J Smith final field and after the small number of acceptors in the Group 1 event plans were changed.
Starting at double figure odds, Melito ($10) showed Ryan he had made the right decision beating home Hot Danish ($3.90) by three-quarters of a length with Mic Mac ($3.30 F) a short-head away in third.
The top three placegetters will clash again in a fortnight when they contest the $300,000 Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) on Sydney Cup Day, April 24.
The victory proved Melito was a promising sprinter and not a stayer as Ryan had originally thought. Her staying career was cut short when she placed last in the Crown Oaks at Flemington last spring, and her win on Saturday was made even sweeter by her unlucky past campaign.
The headline event at Randwick on Saturday was Shoot Out’s win in the $1. 3million Group 1 AJC Australian Stakes (2400m).
Other feature races at the meeting included the $300,000 Group 1 AJC Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) where roughie Yosei claimed an upset win and the $150,000 Group 2 Chairman’s Handicap (2600m) won by the up-and-coming Zabeel mare Jessicabeel.
For more details on Melito’s win in the 2010 T J Smith Stakes click on the race name.
Darley T J Smith Stakes Results for 2010:
|Gerald Ryan||Blake Shinn|
|Les Bridge||Tim Clark|
|Greg Eurell||Hugh Bowman|
|Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen|
|Joseph Pride||Nash Rawiller|
METAL BENDER (NZ)
|Chris Waller||Damien Oliver|
LORD TAVISTOCK (NZ)
|Andrew R Campbell||Jason Waddell|