Trainer Gai Waterhouse equalled her famous father T J Smith’s Doncaster record when More Joyous took out the time honoured ‘Mile’ at Randwick today.
Waterhouse made it seven wins in the Group 1 $2m BMW Doncaster Mile (1600m) when More Joyous with Nash Rawiller aboard under 57.5kg was able to grind out an emphatic win.
Rawiller gave the mighty mare a trouble free run to have her within striking distance on the home turn and with a clear run to the line was able to gather in the leaders and win by three quarters of a length to record her seventh Group 1 victory.
The Chris Waller trainer Shoot Out ($7.50) ran a mighty race with the blinkers back on for Hugh Bowman to finish second with Michelle Payne sneaking up on the fence on Yosei ($31) to grab third in front of a wall of horses.
After some doubt earlier in the week if she was going to run because of the wet track, More Joyous was sent out the punters favourite at $3.70 after $6 was bet heading into the week end.
Waterhouse will step More Joyous out again next week in the Group 1 $500,000 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) after such a satisfying victory today.
“It was the most satisfying thing I’ve seen for years,” Waterhouse said.
“She’s the New South Wales champion mare and she just greeted the judge with such determination and Nash threw his arm up in victory, it was very satisfying.”
“Dad was a hard act to follow and it is lovely that we can have one part of the dream come true, its really exciting.”
“She’s come back at her career best this season, today was satisfying and well rewarded.”
Rawiller was almost lost for words in describing More Joyous’ win in “the hardest race to win.”
“What an unbelievable mare. We knew she could do it today, it’s just great to see her having her crowning moment like this in her career,” Rawiller said.
“The Doncaster Mile is Sydney’s hardest race to win, The handicapper’s already caught up with them by the time they get here, the good horses, she’s just something special. She’s got the motor, that’s what counts”
Rawiller wasn’t too concerned in the run when caught off the track a little bit in the early stages but had a clear run into the race coming to the home and was able to steer her to victory under her big weight.
Waterhouse has had a tremendous Sydney Autumn Carnival with Group 1 wins with More Joyous in the $400,000 Inglis Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1500m), Laser Hawk in the $500,000 Flinders Lane Rosehill Guineas (2000m), and Pierro taking out the $3.5m AAMI Golden Slipper (1200m) and $500,000 Inglis Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) double.