Smart trial from star filly
Group One winner Melody Belle took a step toward her race day return with a trial victory at Avondale on Thursday.
She travelled comfortably in second spot under rider Michael McNab before coasting to the front 300m from home to win her 1000m open heat untested.
|Melody Belle Photo: Race Images|
“She did everything perfectly, won nicely and pulled up fine,” said Stephen Autridge, who trains with Jamie Richards.
“We’re very happy with where we’ve got her. She’s bigger and stronger and ready to kick off in the open 1200m on December 9 at Ellerslie, which will get her ready for the major sprint races.”
Melody Belle enjoyed an outstanding two-year-old season on both sides of the Tasman.
The daughter of Commands was triumphant in the Gr.1 Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) and the Karaka Million (1200m) before claiming the Gr.2 Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) at Eagle Farm during the Queensland winter carnival.
Meanwhile, stablemate Gold Fever shared the pace in her 1000m heat and was allowed to coast home under her own steam for a close fourth in the hands of Wiremu Pinn.
“We’re not too sure exactly where we’re going with her, but she had a nice easy trial with the apprentice on,” Autridge said.
“It was a good heat, a nice trial, she had a blow and she’ll come on for it.”
Gold Fever netted three wins during her juvenile campaign, including the Gr.2 Matamata Breeders’ Stakes (1200m) and she placed in both the Gr.1 Sistema Stakes (1200m) and the Gr.3 Eclipse Stakes (1200m). – NZ Racing Desk.