15 talented three-year-old fillies ran in the Group 2 Kewney Stakes (1400m) at Flemington this afternoon, with the David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-trained Wawail getting a dream run from barrier three.
The filly settled fifth with cover behind the leaders – Vezalay, Bottle Of Smoke, Zambezi Diamond, and London Lolly – while market mover and race favourite Sabatini was second last, having to pull out wide to make her way up the field.
Rounding the home turn, Wawail went for a run between horses and got through, driving to the front to win half a length from Sabatini with Vezalay a further head away in third.
Lee & Shannon Hope’s Sabatini was never going to win from her spot in the field but came close, charging late but ultimately the best ride won.
Michael Walker delivered the winning ride and believes Wawail will 100 percent be a top class filly, whether it’s this preparation or next.
“She just relaxes and shows a kick,” Walker said.
“When I hit the front she was waiting for them again, so I’m going to have to time that run a bit better.
“I was just in behind waiting for something to open because I knew that If it opened she’d quicken, and she did.
“She got to the front with Ollie (Damien Oliver, Vezalay) and she star-gazed again.
“Whether it’s this prep or next prep, she’ll get there.”
It was the second consecutive Kewney Stakes win for David Hayes, who revealed Wawail will head to Dubai but could get one or two more runs in Australia this campaign.
Wawail has now won five of her six career starts, which her trainer believes could have easily been six from six when she was a fast finishing third in the Group 3 Vanity (1400m) on February 21.
“The barrier was fantastic and I just think he’s been hitting the trigger a little bit early on these big days and his timing was perfect in that,” Hayes said of Walker.
“He got through and he arrived at the clock tower and I think at Flemington if you can arrive there, it’s the best time to get there.
“It was a damn good filly running her down in Sabatini and I think today the difference was the barriers; we got the dream run and it had to get back.
“She’ll go to Dubai as a four-year-old and there’s some really good racing for her here. She’s five out of six and could easily have been six out of six, so we’ll maybe look at a race over the carnival – there’s some really nice pickings over there against the fillies and mares.”
Punters who backed Wawail in the Kewney Stakes betting at Ladbrokes.com.au enjoyed a lucrative payout with odds of $7.50.
2015 Kewney Stakes Race Results & Finishing Order
|1||4||WAWAIL||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Michael Walker||–||3||55.5kg||$7|
|2||2||SABATINI||Lee & Shannon Hope||Nicholas Hall||0.5L||13||55.5kg||$3F|
|3||14||VEZALAY||Leon & Troy Corstens||Damien Oliver||0.7L||12||55.5kg||$7|
|4||13||BAYOONAH||Mick Price||Craig Williams||2.2L||14||55.5kg||$21|
|5||5||SEA SPRAY Super Vobis Bonus Scheme||John Moloney||Mark Zahra||2.4L||6||55.5kg||$10|
|6||1||PEGGY JEAN||Gerald Ryan||Hugh Bowman||2.5L||5||55.5kg||$8.50|
|7||6||SAMARTESTED||Mick Price||Glen Boss||3.25L||8||55.5kg||$21|
|8||15||EXCLUSIVE LASS||Nigel Blackiston||James Winks||3.55L||7||55.5kg||$41|
|9||3||LONDON LOLLY||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Dwayne Dunn||3.65L||1||55.5kg||$41|
|10||9||CLOVER LANE (NZ)||Peter G Moody||Vlad Duric||4.15L||9||55.5kg||$41|
|11||10||ZAMBEZI DIAMOND||Brendan McCarthy||Chris Symons||4.45L||10||55.5kg||$81|
|12||16||PRIMEIRO Super Vobis Bonus Scheme||Greg Eurell||Joao Moreira||4.65L||11||55.5kg||$41|
|13||12||CRISTALINA LAGO||Pat Carey||Damian Lane||5.05L||15||55.5kg||$101|
|14||11||BOTTLE OF SMOKE||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||5.25L||4||55.5kg||$8|
|15||7||ROYAL OCEAN||Mick Price||Chad Schofield||5.35L||2||55.5kg||$101|
|–||8||MATILIJA||Lee & Anthony Freedman||James Doyle||–||0||–||–|