Co-trainer Mathew Ellerton hopes to have smart mare Heatherly back to peak fitness for a Moir Stakes 2016 run back at Moonee Valley Racecourse after her first-up win in the Carlyon Stakes at the track.
The daughter of Lonhro jumped favourite for her resuming run in the $120,000 Listed Carlyon Stakes (1000m) over the short distance, the now four-year-old mare having her first start since a brave third when under a length off Flamberge in the Oakleigh Plate in late February.
Before the Group 1 third Heatherly won three on the trot including the Group 2 Rubiton Stakes (1100m) defeating Politeness by five and a half lengths.
She proved her class again resuming at the Valley continuing her stellar record at the tight track that now stands at three wins and a third from four runs.
Ridden by Damian Lane, Heatherly jumped evenly with the field before Stephen McKee’s Kiwi visitor Passing Shot off his brilliant start went to the early lead from the top fancy.
In his down under debut, Swiss Ace stallion Passing Shot set the pace with Heatherly in second and Pretty Possum third on the fence from General Truce who travelled fourth on the outside.
Lane shot to the front on Heatherly coming around the hone turn putting a distance between her and the rest of the runners, while Shiraz had no luck getting caught up late.
Also in the mix was Street Boss six-year-old O’Malley from Cranbourne who stalked up from out wide powering home late.
Travelling well under Lane, the well-supported favourite Heatherly ($2.90) got into a nice rhythm with her high-cruising speed.
She was left in front quite early on the run for the line after Passing Shot dropped out, but had enough in the tank to head off Lloyd Kennewell’s last start Lighting Stakes winning mare from Adelaide Viddora ($5) who lifted late to run second.
O’Malley ($9.50) meanwhile powered home to finish off the Carlyon Stakes trifecta in third in a terrific return.
“She’s a high class filly, but I thought she might be a little bit vulnerable fresh,” winning hoop Lane said after the race.
“But lucky enough she was too good.
“She is all class. For now it’s good to get a win on the board and I think she’s got better things in store.”
Those “better things” could come in the form of a clash with the likes of star sprinter Chautauqua and Mick Price’s Blue Diamond winner Extreme Choice on September 30 in the $500,000 Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m) back at the Valley.
“I think she’ll improve with racing that’s for sure,” Ellerton, who trains in partnership with Simon Zahra, said.
“She’ll be back here in a fortnight and then fingers crossed three weeks later into the Group 1 here.
“That’s the plan.
“I think she’s very quick and once she’s fit we’ll utilise that speed.”
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2016 Carlyon Stakes Results & Finishing Order
Moonee Valley Race 8 – 20/08/2016
|1||5||HEATHERLY||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Damian Lane||–||5||57kg||$2.90F|
|2||14||VIDDORA||Lloyd Kennewell||Joe Bowditch||0.5L||9||55kg||$5.50|
|3||11||O’MALLEY||Enver Jusufovic||Craig Newitt||1.5L||8||56kg||$9.50|
|4||7||GENERAL TRUCE||Tony Vasil||Andrew Mallyon||2.5L||6||56kg||$13|
|5||15||PRETTY POSSUM||Russell Osborne||Jye McNeil (a)||3.25L||3||54kg||$51|
|6||13||ATMOSPHERICAL||Robert Smerdon||Nicholas Hall||3.35L||7||55kg||$10|
|7||1||SHIRAZ||Tony McEvoy||Luke Currie||4.1L||2||58kg||$5|
|8||6||WELL SPRUNG||Lyn Tolson & Leonie Proctor||Michael Walker||5.85L||1||57kg||$26|
|9||4||ICONIC||Mark Riley||Stephen Baster||6.6L||10||57kg||$31|
|10||2||PASSING SHOT (NZ)||Stephen McKee||Dwayne Dunn||9.35L||4||58kg||$20|
|SB||3||KEEN ARRAY||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Craig Williams||–||0||57kg||$8|
|–||16e||MANIHI MISCHIEF||Grant & Peter Dalziel||–||–||0||–||–|
|–||9||DIAMOND OASIS||Darren Weir||Dean Yendall||–||0||–||–|
|–||8||WILD RAIN||Mark Kavanagh||Damien Oliver||–||0||–||–|
|–||12||SUNDAY ESCAPE||Andrew Murray||Craig Newitt||–||0||–||–|
|–||10||BEAU RADA||John McArdle||Chris Symons||–||0||–||–|