Sunlight Wins G1 Newmarket
Already a Group I winner of the VRC Coolmore Stud Stakes last spring, outstanding Zoustar filly Sunlight again showed her dominance over the colts when winning the time honoured Group I VRC Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington on Saturday.
South African born jockey Barend Vorster did not have to wait long to make his mark in Australia, setting a relentless gallop on the filly to beat the fast-finishing Osborne Bulls by three-quarters of a length with Brave Smash (JPN) another short half-head away third ahead of Star Witness colt Graff in fourth.
“Australia is my new home now and what a way to start it off,” Vorster told AAP.
“When I saw the post become available (with McEvoy) I put my name in the hat.
“Singapore has been good to me but I just felt a change was coming. And what a change to have.
“He’s a good trainer and he’s got good horses, so I like to be associated with that.”
Winner of the Magic Millions 2yo Classic and placed in the Golden Slipper at two, Sunlight advances her record to nine wins and four placings from 14 starts with earnings of $3,829,950.
She is the first three-year-old filly since Alinghi in 2005 to win the Newmarket.
“Isn’t she something special,” McEvoy said.
“She’s an incredible filly. She keeps stepping up to the plate and the further she gets into her preparation the better she gets.
“She was so strong at the end of 1200 metres today.
“I know she only had 50.5 kilos but she is a three-year-old filly and they were touting it to be one of the best fields.
“She’s proven to be a star before today, and she has confirmed it today.”
A $300,000 Magic Millions purchase for Aquis/McEvoy Mitchell Racing/Blue Sky Bstock from the Widden Stud draft, Sunlight was bred in partnership by Widden Stud, whose Katie Thompson also shares in her ownership.
Sunlight is a half-sister to Group III placed Sheikha and is the third winner from former speedy filly Solar Charged, winner of the Group III ATC Kindergarten Stakes at her second start.
Solar Charged has a two year-old full sister to Sunlight who was knocked down to McEvoy Mitchell Racing/David Redvers Bloodstock for $600,000 at the 2017 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale and is named Sisstar. She has had one start to date finishing fourth in the Group III VRC Otttawa Stakes in the spring.
Solar Charged’s Sebring colt will be a star lot for Widden Stud at the upcoming Inglis Easter Yearling Sale.
After foaling a Zoustar colt last October, Solar Charged was covered by the Widden Stud stallion again last spring.