Scone-based trainer Paul Messara expressed his optimism that emerging More Than Ready colt Mahisara would be the perfect Caulfield Cup candidate next season after the two-year-old claimed their maiden black-type win at Eagle Farm last weekend.
Mahisara was one of the big winners on Tattersall’s Tiara Day this year, the promising youngster saluting as the $2.70 favourite in the $100,000 Listed Centenary Classic Mercedes-Benz Stakes (1400m).
Ridden by former Brisbane jockey Christian Reith, Mahisara was able to beat home the Bryan Guy-trained Noisy Ocean ($21) by a long-neck while Peter Snowden’s filly Abstract ($3.70) crossed a further length and a quarter away third.
“It was a great win, he’s still a big baby,” Messara said of Mahisara after the race.
Sydney jockey Corey Brown was slapped with a seven-meeting suspension for his ride aboard third-placegetter Abstract.
Brown will miss racing from July 5 – July 15 after being found guilty by Queensland stewards of allowing Abstract to shift in near the winning post in the Centenary Classic Stakes, in turn causing interference to Strike The Stars.
Centenary Classic Stakes winner Mahisara is now being tipped as a strong spring prospect, with connections naming both the $2.5 million Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 15 and the $1.5 million Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington on October 29 as possible spring targets.
“He’s done an excellent job in his first preparation,” Messara said.
“Now we hope he can lift out of this winter campaign and improve into a spring contender.
“I’ll give him a couple of weeks rest here in Queensland then bring him back and head towards the (Caulfield) Guineas.
“I’m not sure how far he’ll get, but clearly for me he has come to the end of his preparation.
“He’s had tough races every start and has not thrown the towel in.”
To date Mahisara’s record stands at five starts for three wins and two minor placings, including a game third to Hot Snitzel in the Group 2 BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) earlier this month.
Saturday’s winning jockey Reith, who has now partnered with Mahisara three times for three wins, also holds a high opinion of the horse and believes he will come back in the spring as a genuine Group 1 chance.
“He has just kept improving and does it on raw ability,” Reith said.
“It’s going to be exciting when he comes back next preparation and gets up over longer ground.”