Consistent mare Catkins delivered trainer Chris Waller a fourth straight win in the Millie Fox Stakes with a typically professional performance in the 2015 edition of the race at Rosehill Gardens this afternoon.
Catkins jumped from the gates well, but the likes of Plucky Belle, Mardi and Avoid Lightning pushed forward early, while jockey Hugh Bowman elected to settle the Dubawi mare in the second half of the field.
Catkins looked as though she had plenty of work to do at the 400 metre mark, but she responded well when asked for an extra effort by Bowman and she finished over the top of Plucky Belle and Avoid Lightning to record her second straight win.
Bowman has developed a very successful relationship with Catkins and the leading hoop was thrilled that the five-year-old was able to show off her versatility to win the 2015 Millie Fox Stakes.
“She is a model of consistently and a pleasure to ride,” Bowman said.
“She can put herself anywhere.
“She flew the gates, but they were all ready for her today and they created a little bit of tempo and that worked in my favor because I was able to switch back in to get a nice run and it was probably as far back as I have been on her for some time.
“There was a bit of bumping going on in front of me which hampered me a little bit, but when I pulled her out she didn’t need much encouragement.”
Connections are desperate to win a Group 1 with Catkins this preparation, but Waller confirmed after the race that he was unlikely to enter the three-time Group 1 placegetter in the entries for the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 14.
Waller said that Catkins is a chance of taking on the males in the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Royal Randwick on March 7 before he returns to mares class in the Group 2 Emancipation Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 28 and the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick on April 11.
“She doesn’t win by a lot, but she is still winning,” Waller said.
“Where we go from here is probably not easy.
“She is probably not a Coolmore horse because of the weight that she will get and I reckon I broke her heart when I did it last year.”
The victory was Waller’s fourth straight win in the Millie Fox Stakes after he won the past three editions of the race with retired mare Red Tracer.