Phillip Stokes’s in-form Adelaide-trained filly Muss Gunpowder continued her ace string of runs this time in with her maiden black-type success in Saturday’s Thousand Guineas Prelude 2015 ahead of the Group 1 over the mile back at the track next month.
The Pendragon filly has now won four of her five starts including three from four this campaign, her two most recent runs both being at home at Morphettville Parks.
Between her two South Australian wins over 1100m and 1250m respectively she travelled to Melbourne and ran a brave third when beaten only one and a quarter lengths by arguably the season’s best filly Petits Filous in the Group 3 Quezette Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield Racecourse.
She returned to the track on Underwood Stakes Day with jockey Craig Williams jumping in the saddle for the $200,000 Group 2 Schweppes Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m).
The well-supported Miss Gunpowder had a wide draw but showed off her smart gate speed to bounce out of the barriers and hit the front early where she also ended up at the end of the race that had her running over 1400m for the first time.
“She’s got very good gate speed,” winning trainer Stokes said after the victory.
“I think she’s actually better suited with a sit but she got the job done today.”
Williams said it took her a little while to settle into the run after racing off so quickly initially, but that once she did she was always a winning chance.
“It took a little bit for her to get back and relax,” he said post-win.
“But she was good and really responded well.
“She is now five for four wins so she’s a very genuine racehorse.”
The progressive filly lead the Prelude field of fellow three-year-old fillies around with the Ciaron Maher-trained Group 2 VRC Sires’ Produce winner over the distance Jameka driving up to run second ahead of the previously undefeated Alaskan Rose who tracked third getting the nice trail for jockey Steven Arnold.
Mid-race the Richard Laming-trained Payroll and jockey Jim ‘The Pumper’ Cassidy made a bold sweeping run right around the outside of all her rivals to steal the lead from Miss Gunpowder, who Williams was able to keep on the rails.
Around the turn for home the Adelaide raider retained the inside run and she was flying down the rails fast making up the ground Payroll had put on her 300m from the line.
Williams again found the front and Miss Gunpowder ($4.20) secured the win, fighting off the roughie of the field Payroll ($61) in a race that looked tough for the backmarkers to run on who sustained the long wide run and stuck on for second ahead of Jameka ($9.50) in third.
The plan for Stokes is to now keep his filly fit and happy for her Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival Grand Final on October 10 in the $500,000 Group 1 BECK Thousand Guineas (1600m) after winning the Prelude that produced last year’s Guineas winner Amicus (2nd).
“We had her very fit (today) it’s now just a matter of keeping her up for another two weeks,” he said.
“She’ll stay here and we’ve just got to keep her happy now.”
Stokes also ruled out running her after the Thousand Guineas and said the Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m) at Flemington during the Melbourne Cup Carnival was not on the cards.
“I didn’t nominate for the Oaks,” he said.
“I think after the Guineas that’ll be enough.”
Before the Thousand Guineas Prelude results Miss Gunpowder was an $11 chance in futures Thousand Guineas betting at Ladbrokes.com.au.
That is a price sure to firm as she defeated former top fancies Stay With Me ($4.20) and proven miler Pasadena Girl ($5) in the lead-up who failed to finish in the money.
To check out the updated odds and back your favourite fillies for next month’s classic make sure you’ve got an account open at Ladbrokes.com.au – home of the $700 bonus bet for new depositing players that quote the code SPRINGBONUS!
2015 Thousand Guineas Prelude Results & Finishing Order
Caulfield Race 5 – 26/09/2015
|1||7||MISS GUNPOWDER||Phillip Stokes||Craig Williams||–||8||55kg||$4.20F|
|2||11||PAYROLL||Richard Laming||Jim Cassidy||1L||6||55kg||$41|
|3||2||JAMEKA||Ciaron Maher||Damien Oliver||1.2L||5||57.5kg||$9.50|
|4||10||SUPER CASH||Andrew Noblet||Kerrin McEvoy||1.4L||1||55kg||$9.50|
|5||1||PASADENA GIRL (NZ)||Peter G Moody||Vlad Duric||2.4L||2||57.5kg||$5|
|6||4||STAY WITH ME||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Dwayne Dunn||3.4L||9||56.5kg||$5|
|7||5||MY POPPETTE||Robert Smerdon||Mark Zahra||5.15L||7||56.5kg||$21|
|8||8||ALASKAN ROSE (NZ)||Michael Moroney||Steven Arnold||5.9L||4||55kg||$8|
|9||3||SAGARONNE||Toby Edmonds||Blake Shinn||6.4L||10||56.5kg||$21|
|10||9||DON’T DOUBT MARLEY||Robbie Griffiths||Damian Lane||6.9L||3||55kg||$21|
|–||12||EFFORTLESS MISS||Shane Fliedner||James McDonald||–||0||–||–|
|–||6||REEMAH||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Michael Walker||–||0||–||–|