Talented three-year-old and clear favourite Winx has broken through for a maiden win at the highest level at Doomben Racecourse this afternoon; producing a monumental turn of foot in the final straight to take out the featured Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m).
Jumping from the gates only fairly, jockey Hugh Bowman was forced to settle Winx off the pace of early leaders Col ‘N’ Lil, Imperial Lass and Platinum Witness past the post the first time and rounded onto the back straight on the rails.
Dropping back to only four positions from the tail of the field over the back straight, Bowman pressed the Street Cry filly forward approaching the final bend but was forced to push wide of the main pack.
Offered a clear racing line upon arriving on the final straight, Winx immediately responded when asked for an extra effort by Bowman; catching race leader Imperial Lass with absolute ease with 200m to run and crossing the line close to four lengths in the clear of an impressive Ungrateful Ellen.
Bowman delivered a typically impressed ride aboard Winx for success in the 2015 Queensland Oaks and was thrilled to partner the classy three-year-old to a maiden Group 1 victory.
“I did come here with a lot of confidence, I had a lot to do with her last prep,” Bowman said.
“You could make a case to say she was a bit unlucky in the ATC Oaks this year but Chris has done a marvellous win with her, she deserved to win this and she’s done it with authority.
“I would have been happy to sit up in the first five if I could have got there without pushing but there was a good bit of pressure 50m after jumping.
“I just got her in a rhythm and I was sort of midfield or a bit worse, but I was all very comfortable in the run.
“I just had the horse to capitalise on a couple of runs approaching the 600m mark and the rest is history.
“She didn’t feel like she was going to let down like that. I know she was dominant two weeks ago at the Sunshine Coast but I think this was a stronger field.
“There was still well-performed horses in it and she’s certainly got plenty of upside.”
Trainer Chris Waller was understandably thrilled with Winx’s performance in the 2015 Queensland Oaks and was quick to lay all the praise on her incredible turn of foot immediately after the race.
“Someone just asked me if I expected her to win like that, well I didn’t even expect her to win, you don’t think like that,” Waller said.
“You go into the race hoping they can run up to their best and fortunately she did; she showed that she was dominant.
“When you’ve got that bit of class and that turn of foot it doesn’t matter where you sit or what you draw, they can overcome things like that. It helps when they’ve got that extra gear and Hughie found that today.”
In taking out the 2015 Queensland Oaks, Winx has now won six of her 12 career starts; finishing in the minors a further three times.