She may be coming up against a Golden Rose winner on Victoria Derby Day this Saturday but Brisbane-based filly Missy Longstocking is ready for the 2013 Coolmore Stud Stakes challenge according to her trainer Liam Birchley.
Chris Waller’s Sydney-trained Northern Meteor colt Zoustar, winner of the Golden Rose two back before a blistering effort in the Group 2 Roman Consul Stakes (1200m) at the start of the month, is the dominant favourite for Saturday’s $500,000 Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m).
Zoustar may be the one to beat in the clash for three-year-old sprinters, but Birchley is confident his in-form daughter of Sequalo can give the favourite a run for their money down the famous Flemington straight despite not having had a jumpout at the track pre-race.
“I really think the straight will suit her if she can draw the right spot,” he told AAP.
Birchley’s confidence will be further boosted if his filly can draw a nice inside alley for the Group 1 too.
“If she can draw inside and be away from the crowd she’ll be a lot more relaxed, but that’s not in our hands,” he said.
“She’s strong at the end of her races which is what you need and she handles all conditions.
“She gets herself in the right spot and it’s a matter then of whether she’s good enough.”
Missy Longstocking has won eight of her 11 career starts and is one of the most consistent, and experienced, of the Coolmore nominees this spring.
She’s also won both of her starts this time in.
“She just doesn’t know how to lay down,” Birchley said.
“That has won her a few races.
“She’s obviously above average but she’s got that terrific will to win.”
First up she enjoyed an easy kill over the 1000m at home at Eagle Farm in late September.
Then last start Birchley bought her to Caulfield to kick-off her Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival campaign where she scored another win.
This time the improving filly put three lengths on her closest rival Anatina to take out the Group 3 Thoroughbred Club Stakes (1200m) when ridden by regular Queensland hoop Damien Browne who retains the ride on the weekend.
She didn’t do it easy in the Group 3 either, forced to race wide throughout, making her big winning margin even more impressive.
Now she’ll face a Cup Carnival acid test on Saturday stepping up to Group 1 class for the first time in the Coolmore.
“Obviously it’s her biggest test but she’s earned her shot at something like that,” Birchley said.
“Her record speaks for itself and she’s probably been unlucky not to have won a few of the ones she’s lost.”
Other notable Coolmore nominees this year include Champagne Stakes winner Thump, Blue Sapphire champion Lion Of Belfort, Golden Slipper second placed Sidestep back in action and Gai Waterhouse’s Caulfield Guineas runner-up Divine Calling.
The official 2013 Coolmore Stud Stakes field will be released on Wednesday and published right here at Races.com.au so stay tuned.
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