Four year old mare Heavens Above took the step up to Stakes company with a solid win in the Group 3 $150,000 City Ford Group Aspiration Quality (1600m) at Randwick today.
The Tim Martin trained Heavens Above was a last start winner in restricted class in a 1400m BenchMark 85 Handicap at Randwick on February and showed today that she is worthy of her black type success.
Winning jockey Christian Reith settled Heavens Above ($3.20 favourite) near the tail of the field before making a mid race move at the 800m to keep the leader All Cerise ($9) in his sights.
Hugh Bowman had the in-form All Cerise travelling smoothly in front and Reith was keen to get to within striking distance coming to the home turn.
All Cerise still had plenty to offer at the 200m but under hard riding from Reith, Heavens Above was able to get the upper hand close to the line to keep the punters happy.
The well fancied Alegria ($5) also made up plenty of ground from the back to fill third spot in a blanket finish for the minor placing.
Martin is certain that Heavens Above will handle a step up in distance and has picked out the Group 3 $150,000 Epona Stakes (1900m) for the fillies and mares at Rosehill in a fortnight as her next assignment.
“She has done great, very happy,” Martin said.
“They weren’t going hard up front, Hughie sort of stacked them up and I was pleased when he got going early, it was the right move.”
“She will run in the Epona at her next start at Rosehill, just one step at a time.”
Today’s win was Heavens Above third from twelve starts and took her prizemoney to over $270,000.
Aspiration Quality Results
|1||5||HEAVENS ABOVE||Tim Martin||Christian Reith||–||8||54kg||$3.20F|
|2||1||ALL CERISE||Chris Waller||Hugh Bowman||0.5L||5||58kg||$9|
|3||6||ALEGRIA||John O’Shea||James McDonald||2L||9||54kg||$5|
|4||8||SKYLINE BLUSH||Anthony Cummings||Kerrin McEvoy||2.1L||3||54kg||$13|
|5||7||MARY LOU||Anthony Cummings||Jason Collett||2.2L||10||54kg||$9.50|
|6||4||SWEET FIRE||Chris Waller||Tim Clark||2.3L||2||55.5kg||$12|
|7||9||BLENDWELL||Peter G Moody||Tommy Berry||2.4L||6||54kg||$26|
|8||2||ADORABEEL (NZ)||Joseph Pride||Brenton Avdulla||2.6L||1||56.5kg||$6.50|
|9||10||PIAMIMI||Greg Bennett||Ms Winona Costin (a)||3.2L||11||54kg||$71|
|10||3||ZARZALI||James Cummings||Glyn Schofield||7.2L||4||56.5kg||$21|
|11||11||MONOGRAM||John O’Shea||Craig Williams||8.4L||7||54kg||$21|