Zydeco will have propelled herself into Crown Oaks favouritism with her Group 2 Wakeful Stakes win at Flemington today.
The three-year-old filly showed her true class and ability to win the race by two lengths ahead of Maraatib and Transonic.
Dear Demi was clearly the hard luck story of the race, finishing fourth after getting caught up in traffic down the final straight.
However, Zydeco was the dominant winner of today’s Wakeful Stakes in what was only her fifth career race start.
Jockey Kerrin McEvoy was aboard Zydeco for her $300,000 Wakeful Stakes win.
“I was able to just get back and relax and got to the outside and she really picked up,” McEvoy said.
“(We had a) trouble free run.”
McEvoy acknowledged the fact that Dear Demi never got a clear run in the race.
“Jimmy (Cassidy) was inside me and he kind of kicked through at the 800m,” he said.
“I knew he was in amongst them and needed luck but this filly just got to the outside.”
McEvoy will now partner Zydeco in the $1 million Crown Oaks at Flemington next Thursday.
“Hopefully we can do the same next week,” he said.
Zydeco is trained at Mornington by Anthony Freedman, who was at the track to watch his filly win today’s Wakeful Stakes.
“She’s a lovely filly,” Freedman said of Zydeco.
“She’s just kept lifting each time and hopefully she can do it again.”
Freedman was pleased with the ride from McEvoy in the race.
“I did say to him you’ve got natural stamina so don’t be afraid to sit a bit wide,” the trainer said.
The team will now look towards the Crown Oaks, which has always been Zydeco’s long term spring goal.
“She should enjoy the mile and a half next Thursday,” Freedman said.
“I think there was a little bit to come out of today.
“She can possibly even improve into Thursday.”
The Zabeel filly has now won two of her five race starts and has earned more than $240,000 in prize money.