THE Spirit Of Boom grip on next month’s Magic Millions 2YO Classic was loosened a shade as Tony McEvoy’s flying filly Sunlight put another first-season sire into the spotlight on the Gold Coast on Saturday.
Sunlight is the first winner for Widden Stud-based Zoustar and she firmed from $15 into $7 with UBET for the Magic Millions after posting a near five-length win.
Sunlight’s official time of 50.42 seconds was significantly quicker than the 50.91sec posted by Katy’s Daughter in the other two-year-old division.
Sunlight, a $300,000 buy from last year’s Magic Millions for McEvoy Mitchell Racing and Julian Blaxland’s Blue Sky Bloodstock, has plenty of improvement to come, according to her trainer.
McEvoy took one look at the filly after she returned to scale and said “she’ll run again” before the Millions, naming the 1100m two-year-old at the Coast one week before the $2 million Classic.
It’s the same race Houtzen won last year before claiming the Millions.
“She’s very full,” McEvoy said. “She’s just up in the body, she needs a bit more.”
McEvoy had to revert to plan-B for Sunlight after he was forced to scratch her from last week’s Calaway Gal Stakes because of the widest barrier.
“The black-type last week was the key, but given she’s not wound up yet,” he said.
“I just was worried if she got gassed from that barrier, it might have been the end of our prep.
“When there was the alternative with the benefit of being able to have a look at the track here, the owners all said ‘go for it’. I wanted to see her let rip and I’m really pleased.
“At Flemington she got it all wrong. She overraced and didn’t use her oxygen well. Today she was nice and smooth.
“She’s growing up and learning so I’m very excited about her.”
Jockey Luke Currie won dual Group 1 races for McEvoy this year on Hey Doc and rates Sunlight as a filly of significant promise.
“She was very impressive. Tony has always had a big opinion of her,” he said.
“She ran well at Flemington, but it might not have suited. I came back off the leader and she was a little bit uncomfortable that way.
“Rolling today, as she had done in her trial here, she was better.
“It was a big day down the straight at Flemington and she got a bit stirred up.
“I think she has improved off Flemington.
“Obviously the trip up here has brought her on a bit. She’s quite a nice filly to deal with.”
Currie said Sunlight gave him the feel that she would comfortably see out 1200m.
“She ran that race out strongly and I couldn’t see it being a worry,” he said.
Copy: Nathan Exelby - The Sunday Mail (QLD), Images: News Corp and The Courier Mail.