Tiamo Grace is set to progress to the 2016 Crown Oaks after she recorded an impressive victory in the 2016 Wakeful Stakes at Flemington this afternoon.
Damian Lane was caught wide on Tiamo Grace in the early stages of the race after she was a drifter in the lead-up to the Wakeful Stakes, but she could not have travelled into the race better and she cantered up to her rivals without being asked for an effort at the top of the straight.
Tiamo Grace responded well when tested by Lane and she raced away from her rivals to stamp herself as the main danger to Yankee Rose in the Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m) at Flemington on Thursday.
“It is a classic D K Weir operation,” Lane said.
“They start in the bush and they build some confidence and when he brings them to town you know they are ready and she showed that last start.
“Off that win it would be very hard not to take her to the Crown Oaks.”
Tiamo Grace made her racing debut with a third place finish at Swan Hill and she had race starts at Donald and Murtoa before she made her metropolitan racing debut with a second place finish in the Group 3 Ethereal Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield on October 15.
Darren Weir stable representative Jeremy Rodgers said that the stable had given Tiamo Grace those country race starts to build her fitness ahead of the Wakeful Stakes and he indicated that the daughter of Monaco Consul will now press on to the Crown Oaks.
“She is a really nice progressive filly,” Rodgers said.
“She was beautifully ridden by Damien – he had her nice and relaxed in a lovely spot and when he let her loose at the top of the straight she did the rest.
“She has been a Darren Weir special.
“Today was her long-time goal, but we will just see how she is before deciding whether we push on to Thursday or put her in the autumn.
“She has just kept improving in everything that we have asked her to do.”
Sebring Dream was far from disgraced in second and also looks likely to press on to the Crown Oaks, while Missrock tired late but was still able to hold on for third.