Winx set to become best Randwick miler in George Main Stakes

Source: Chris Roots – Sydney Morning Herald /

Chris Waller believes punters will see Winx racing at the distance that suits her best and in near peak condition as she tries to surpass Super Impose’s Randwick group 1 mile record in the George Main Stakes on Saturday.

As with Usain Bolt at his peak when he held world records at the 100m and 200m, Winx is just a superior athlete to her rivals. So the interest turns to where she is at her best. She holds a course record from her first Cox Plate over the 2040m at Moonee Valley, a race she’s aiming to win for the third time next month, but after 19 straight wins, Waller suggested the 1600m is her optimum distance.

“I think it is her best distance without explaining it. I think she is a sprinter-miler, that is very good at 2000 metres as well,” Waller said. “She is just an amazing horse.” It is hard to argue with Waller, Winx has won five group 1s at the Randwick miles – the Epsom, Doncaster, Chipping Norton Stakes twice and last year’s George Main Stakes. It is mark she shares with the great miler Super Impose, who won the Epsom and Doncaster twice each and a Chipping Norton Stakes.

Although she has had scares at the first two runs of her preparation, Waller is convinced Winx will be peaking at Randwick for her first group 1 assignment of the spring. “Personally I think she is going as well or better than she was going before. She is stronger horse,” he said. The six-year-old Street Cry mare has made a habit of making her third-up run of a preparation close to her best. Her first Cox Plate was her third run of a campaign, as was her demolition of the George Ryder Stakes field last autumn.

Winx had to use every inch of the Randwick straight to run down Red Excitement in the Chelmsford Stakes and had a little blow after the race in sign her fitness was improving. “It was just enough to say she is going to improve and her coat is still coming through,” Waller said. “She hasn’t had any little niggles and she is as sound as you could ever like.”

Winx actually put on three kilos following her Chelmsford Stakes and her continued development, she has put on 10 kilos with every preparation, leaves Waller shaking his head. “It confuses you a bit because she starts the prep six to 10 kilos heavier every time and you sort of second-guess whether she’s fit enough. Then she holds the weight through out the preparation,” Waller said. “It is quite amazing seeing it.”

Foxplay, which tested Winx’s in the Warwick Stakes, is set for another crack the superstar in the George Main with Waller to have Mackintosh, Tom Melbourne and McCreery, which also races in the Magic Bloodstock silks of Peter Tighe, in the group 1. Gerald Ryan will have Red Excitement there to test her again and Tim Martin will run his group 1-winning mare Heavens Above.