Daytona Grey could head to the 2015 The Goodwood on May 16 after the unheralded gelding scored an upset win in the 2015 Irwin Stakes at Morphettville this afternoon.
Daytona Grey into the Irwin Stakes as the extreme outsider in betting markets for the Group 3 event, but he took advantage of the hot early tempo set by Riziz, The Messina Nymph and Platelet to finish over the top of his rivals to record the biggest win of his racing career to date.
The Artie Schiller gelding was having just his fourth start at Group level after previously missing the placings in the 2012 Group 3 Breeders Stakes (1200m), 2013 Group 2 Euclase Stakes (1200m) and the 2014 Group 3 Spring Stakes (1200m), but he could now be given an opportunity at the highest level of racing in The Goodwood due to the impressive nature of his Irwin Stakes win.
Darren Weir-trained Platelet started the Irwin Stakes as a clear favourite following her first-up victory in a heat of the Jeep 55 Second Challenge at Moonee Valley on March 27, but the Strategic mare was caught wide in the early stages of the race and she was unable to show her usual turn-of-foot when he was asked for an extra effort by jockey Brad Rawiller.
Platelet is still expected to press on to the Group 1 Robert Sangster Stakes (1200m) at Morphettville on May 2 and she is chasing her second win in the Group 1 event after winning the race in 2013 and finishing second behind Driefontein last year.
Another galloper that will be pressing on to the Robert Sangster Stakes from the Irwin Stakes is Perth-based Magnifisio, who loomed as a winning chance at the 250 metre mark before she tired in the final stages to miss the placings.
Trainer Jim Taylor was confident that the mare would take plenty of benefit from her run in the Irwin Stakes and he believes that she will be primed for the Robert Sangster Stakes.
The Messina Nymph managed to tough it out to the finish for third and is another that is likely to head towards the Robert Sangster Stakes, while Riziz did plenty of work early and was still able to finish in second position.
Darren Weir-trained Scarlet Billows went into the Irwin Stakes as a $10 chance, but never got going and was tailed off by jockey Michelle Payne more than 30 lengths behind the rest of the field.