Secret Agenda has mustered an impressive turn of foot to win the Group 2 Sapphire Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick this afternoon; the final race on Day 2 of The Championships.
A proven performer on soft going, Secret Agenda was rated only some chance of success this afternoon, but did her chances of returning to winning form no harm when she jumped well and took a position within the field of classy sprinters.
Receiving a reasonably carefree run in transit as Tempt Me Not, Thames Court and Missrock traded early blows on pace, jockey Damien Oliver elected to pull the Not A Single Doubt mare wide approaching the final straight, but allowed her plenty of time to balance before asking for an extra effort.
The veteran hoop was greeted with a big kick with 200m to run as Secret Agenda caught the lead pack; pulling a length clear to savage the line ahead of a gallant Missrock; Artistry running on well to finish third.
Secret Agenda has been a notable performer for Caulfield trainer Mick Price throughout her entire racing career and carried an impressive record of four wins and as many minors, through fifteen starts into this afternoon’s Sapphire Stakes.
Having returned to the paddock after capping her 2016 campaign seventh in the Listed MSS Security Sprint (1200m) at Flemington on Melbourne Cup Day, Secret Agenda resumed this time for fifth in the Listed Hareeba Stakes (1200m) at Mornington a fortnight ago, in what was her only other start prior to the Sapphire Stakes.
Classy three-year-old Missrock has been somewhat inconsistent through recent seasons, but showed good ability to run second in the Sapphire Stakes.
Stamping herself as a filly to follow through a smart two-year-old campaign, the daughter of Fastnet Rock returned to the races for a smart win at Flemington on March 4th, before placing ninth in the Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) on March 18th.
Market mover Artistry contested only her second race of the year when third in the Sapphire Stakes, having resumed for an impressive win in the Group 3 Maurice McCarten Stakes (1100m) four weeks ago.