Exciting filly Mosheen (3f Fastnet Rock x Sumehra, by Stravinsky) showed a rare brand of speed and stamina at Flemington on Thursday to win the Group I VRC Oaks by a staggering nine length margin.
The Robert Smerdon trained filly has been cast somewhat in the shadow of that other Fastnet Rock filly Atlantic Jewel this spring, but in her absence Mosheen seized the opportunity to shine.
Backing up from a gallant sixth in the Group I VRC Myer Classic over 1600 metres against the older mares on Saturday, Mosheen was ridden a confident race by Danny Nikolic, who sent the filly to the front from barrier two.
She quickly settled into a comfortable rhythm and when asked to extend in the straight, Mosheen produced a turn of foot that left her rivals seemingly tied to the fence.
Dowager Queen battled on for second with Roma Giaconda finishing on for third, but the winner was in a class of her own.
“Robert (Smerdon) left it up to me, he said there wasn’t much speed in the race and he had her 110% today,” Nikolic said.
“She was so relaxed going to the barriers, then when we jumped I just put her to sleep and I knew if she got the easy run in front which she did, she would take a power of beating.”
After chasing Atlantic Jewel home for second in the Group I MRC Thousand Guineas, connections of Mosheen decided to dodge that filly at Flemington, which is why she ran in the Myer Classic on Saturday in preference to the traditional Oaks lead up of the Group II VRC Wakeful Stakes, won in sensational style by Atlantic Jewel.
The decision to run in the Oaks was only made when Atlantic Jewel was withdrawn due to injury on Sunday morning.
“I just hoped she’d relax enough today,” Smerdon said.
“Once she got to the corner and had that easy run you knew she’d be hard to beat as those fillies can’t quicken like she can.
“If Atlantic Jewel was here today we’d be at home in the box or in the paddock.”
A $250,000 purchase from the Bylong Park Thoroughbreds draft at the 2010 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale, Mosheen is raced by a syndicate headed by Phil Sly and has won three races and placed four times from nine starts earning $1.5 million in prizemoney.
Second to star colt Sepoy in the Group I ATC Golden Slipper Stakes during the autumn, Mosheen is the sixth Group I winner for leading young sire Fastnet Rock and is the second of his Group I winners trained by Robert Smerdon, who also puts the polish on SAJC Goodwood Handicap winner Lone Rock.
Bred by Bylong Park Thoroughbreds, Mosheen is the first foal of the Stravinsky mare Sumehra (NZ), a winning half-sister to Group I HK Derby and International Mile winner Lucky Owners and stakes-winner Miss Power Bird from the family of champion racehorse Might and Power, whose many wins included Melbourne Cup, Caulfield Cup and Cox Plate.
Given his presence in her pedigree, it’s no surprise Mosheen was able to see out the 2500 metres and she does have a 5 x 4 double cross of the great staying influence Sir Tristram (IRE), a factor that also wouldn’t go astray in helping her find the required stamina.
Sumehra is due to be covered by Mosheen’s sire Fastnet Rock.