Speedy filly Eloping led from start to finish to record a tough win from Tahni Dancer and Tawteen in the 2014 Champagne Stakes at Moonee Valley this afternoon.
Eloping was forced to work for the lead in the early stages of the Champagne Stakes by Tawteen, but the Choisir filly was able to take up her trademark position at the front of the field and never looked like being beaten in the final stages of the race.
Jockey Stephen Baster was reunited with Eloping after Linda Meech rode the three-year-old when she resumed with a tough third in the Group 2 McEwen Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley on September 6 and he paid credit to the toughness of the filly.
“She is one of the toughest fillies that I have ever ridden,” Baster said.
“She just gives her all and tries so damn hard.
“I ended up getting a couple of easy sectionals there which obviously helped, but she is just a beauty.
“Pete and Craig they work so hard and the results are coming now.
“It is great to be a part of it.”
Eloping had eight race starts as a juvenile in three different states, but the tough two-year-old campaign clearly has not taken any of the talent away from the tough galloper.
Co-trained Peter Morgan admitted that he was worried that Eloping would not come back as a three-year-old, but those fears have been premature and his training partner Craig Widdison said that he was constantly impressed with the way that the Choisir filly is able to keep lifting the bar.
“She is a little star, what you see is what you get and she just lobs every time,” Widdison said.
“Every time you ask her to do something she does it every time.”
“She just keeps bouncing back and she is fantastic.”
Morgan and Widdison are taking it one race at a time with Eloping during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, but Widdison confirmed that she would likely have her next race start in the Listed Blue Sapphire (1200m) at Caulfield on October 15.
“We will possibly look at the Blue Sapphire,” Widdison said.
“We will see how she comes through it, but that might be a nice race.
Eloping was purchased for just $12,000 at the 2013 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, but she has already made over $800,000 in prizemoney for connections.