Encosta Filly Wins Black Opal

Royally bred filly Lucky Raquie (2f Encosta de Lago x Monsoon Wedding, by Danehill) ran up to her illustrious pedigree when scoring a fast finishing win in the $275,000 Listed Canberra Black Opal Stakes on Sunday.

Third to Alpha Miss in the Listed ATC Gimcrack Stakes back in the spring, the Gerald Ryan trained daughter of Encosta de Lago relished a strong pace to settle back in the field for Glyn Schofield before surging home to win the 1200 metre sprint by three-quarters a length.

“I’ve always had a great opinion of her,” said winning rider Glyn Schofield.

“I don’t think it’s the last race, or the last black-type race she’s going to win.

“There’s a lot in front of her.”

Lucky Raquie is nominated for the $3.5 million Golden Slipper at Rosehill on April 5, but Ryan hinted she may bypass the race to be saved for a shot at the $1 million Group I ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) on April 12 and the Group I Champagne Stakes (1600m) two weeks later.

“She’s not quite a Slipper horse,” Schofield said. “She’s not that naturally sharp but she’s certainly very strong at the end of her races.”

A homebred for Teeley Assets, who won the Group I VRC Newmarket Handicap on Saturday with Lankan Rupee, Lucky Raquie is a full sister to Group III winner Precious Lorraine being the sixth winner from six foals to race from stakes-placed Monsoon Wedding, a full sister to champion sire Redoute’s Choice and Group I winner Platinum Scissors and half-sister to Group I winner Manhattan Rain.

Lucky Raquie is also a virtual sister-in-blood to this season’s boom two year-old Rubick, winner of the Group III MRC Blue Diamond Prelude and fourth in the Group I MRC Blue Diamond Stakes.

He too is by Encosta de Lago and his dam Sliding Cube is another three-quarter sister to Monsoon Wedding.

Her close relation Rubick was the 100th stakes-winner for champion sire Encosta de Lago and now Lucky Raquie is the 101st!

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