Reigning champion sire Fastnet Rock featured with a stakes double on Saturday following the return to form of his champion daughter Mosheen (4m Fastnet Rock x Sumehra, by Stravinsky) and a first time stakes success for up and comer Jolie Bay (3f Fastnet Rock x Legally Bay, by Snippets).
The Robert Smerdon trained Mosheen was a superstar last season reeling off four Group I victories in the VRC Oaks, Australian Guineas, ATC Randwick Guineas and Vinery Stud Stakes, but her preparation this spring had been somewhat up in the air following two average runs after a throat operation.
Sent to the post as favourite for the Group II VRC Blazer Stakes, Mosheen recaptured her best form to win the 1400 metre event by a length and a quarter with Nicholas Hall in the saddle.
Mosheen will have her next start in the Group II Tristarc Stakes (1400m) on Caulfield Cup day on her way to the Group I VRC Myer Classic at Flemington on Derby Day.
“Her throat is perfect and the operation has been 100 percent successful, so it was just about getting her fit as long as the desire was still there,” Smerdon said.
“She had all the favours. She had a beautiful run from a good gate after a brilliant beginning and got out at the right time but I think she has still got lots of improvement to come.
“Her body weight will tell us that. We’d like to think she can be here at her peak in four weeks’ time for the Myer (Classic).”
Purchased for $250,000 from the Bylong Park Thoroughbreds draft at the 2010 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale, Mosheen has the impressive record of eight wins and five placings from 17 starts with $2.7 million in prizemoney.
Raced by a partnership including her original owner Phil Sly and leading Japanese breeder Katsumi Yoshida, Mosheen is the first foal of the Stravinsky (USA) 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.
Sumehra is due to foal to Fastnet Rock.
Creating a big impression at just her third race start was three year-old filly Jolie Bay, who upstaged the colts to win the Group II ATC Roman Consul Stakes for the Hawkes Racing team.
A homebred for Chris and Jane Barham, Jolie Bay charged home from back in the field to win the 1200 metre sprint by a short head and has the overall record of two wins from three starts with prizemoney in excess of $125,000.
“To go from winning a class one at Hawkesbury as a maiden to winning a Group II at Randwick, it doesn’t get much better,” said co-trainer Michael Hawkes.
“She’s real performer, she tries her heart out and she showed that today.”
Jolie Bay is the best of three winners from three foals to race from Group III winning Snippets mare Legally Bay, who comes from the renowned Gypsy Moss (IRE) family that has produced Group I winners such as Ideal Planet, Innocent King and company.
Jolie Bay is the 36th stakes-winner for Fastnet Rock and her dam has a yearling filly by him and is due to foal to the champion sire again this spring.