After a moderate beginning from box eight, the Jason Mackay trained chaser quickly gained momentum to take the lead at the first turn, and scored by four and a half lengths over second placegetter Black Empress. The daughter of Goodesy and Sirocco Lass has flourished on the racetrack of late, winning five of her last six races, with brilliant career statistics of nineteen victories from thirty starts.
Heat one went to Neil Falk’s Smashing Sally, leading all the way in a solid performance of 30.71. The $2.80 second favourite dwelt at the start, however mustered brilliant pace to make her way through the field and salute by two lengths. Second placegetter Eleazar put in an enormous run for trainer Dean Swain, after tailing off for a majority of the race and will be a definite danger next week. $2.30 favourite Ready To Riot finished in third position.
Dean Swain’s second qualifier came in heat two, with in-form chaser Rue De Kahn finding the front at the first turn to score comfortably by four lengths in a fast time of 30.57. $28 outsider Aurora Girl put in a terrific performance from box five to qualify for next week for trainer Marie Burton and took ground off the winner in the run to the line. $2.00 favourite Zipping Delta found considerable trouble early on and finished in third position.
Marie Burton got a second qualifier through to the final in heat four with $9.30 outsider Asia’s Babe, who mustered brilliant early pace to lead throughout in an impressive time of 30.67. Last year’s Oaks winner Calm Model finished in second position and will give trainer Clay Mullens a chance at back-to-back victories. Favourite runner Kulu Special unfortunately suffered an injury early on in the affair and tailed off.
The full results of qualifiers for next week are:
Zipping Willow – Jason Mackay (30.42)
Rue De Kahn – Dean Swain (30.57)
Asia’s Babe – Marie Burton (30.67)
Black Empress – Harry Sarkis (30.70)
Smashing Sally – Neil Falk (30.71)
Aurora Girl – Marie Burton (30.82)
Calm Model – Clay Mullens (30.84)
Eleazar – Dean Swain (30.84)