Vain Queen returned to winning form with a most impressive victory over Bounding in the 2014 Mumm Stakes at Flemington this afternoon.
Vain Queen was beaten as an odds-on favourite in the Listed All Victorian Sprint Series Final (1200m) at Flemington on July 12 and she was slightly disappointing in both the Group 3 Theshark.com.au Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on August 30 and the Listed Testa Rossa Stakes (1200m) at the same venue on September 28, but she relished the return to the Flemington straight and stormed clear from the rest of the strong Mumm Stakes to record a dominant win.
Jockey Damien Oliver settled Vain Queen behind the leaders in the early stages of the race and always felt like he had plenty of horse under him, but he was clearly impressed with the exceptional turn-of-foot that she exhibited when he asked for an extra effort.
“We were smoking behind them and I just needed a bit of daylight and she just exploded,” Oliver said.
“She has a great turn of foot this mare and if you can smother her up like we did today and then she sees daylight then she really lets go for you.
“He is a great trainer John Sadler and it is great to ride a winner for him.”
Sadler admitted that he thought Vain Queen would have to perform at her best to beat the likes of Bounding in the Mumm Stakes and he was thrilled to see the talented mare return to winning form.
The veteran trainer has always had a high opinion of Vain Queen and he believes that performance showed that she was capable of performing at the highest level of racing; with the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington during the 2015 Melbourne Festival Of Racing a potential target for the five-year-old.
“I said to (owners) Phillip and Mario that I thought she would have to bring her best performance here today because it was a really good race and it could have been a Group 2 race,” Sadler said.
“She really likes the straight and today she was really calm and looked to be in the zone as if she was looking forward to it.
“I said to Thomas my son when she walked around in the mounting yard that I was sure that was the best that she had ever looked and I was hoping she would just win, but to win like that was really exciting.
“She has shown today that maybe at some stage there might be a Group 1 in her.
“She has won four out of five up the straight now and one of them was a really good win, but it doesn’t top today.
“When you get a mare like this that is so handy you really need to as a trainer get black type beside their name and we have done that, so we can relax a little bit.”
Vain Queen has now recorded seven wins from 12 race starts and the Mumm Stakes victory is her maiden race triumph at black type level.