A year on from her greatest success, Michelle Payne was back in the winner’s enclosure at Flemington.
Payne won last year’s Melbourne Cup on Prince Of Penzance and a year later, on the same date, she was successful in a minor race on Oaks day.
Riding the Henry Dwyer-trained Tavi Bay, Payne guided the four-year-old to victory in the Red Rock Deli Plate.
Meeting with support from $26 to $19, Tavi Bay scored by a half neck victory over Spanner Head ($26) with Champagne Ready ($7.50) a long head away third.
Tavi Bay’s win was Payne’s first on an Oaks day meeting.
“That’s now made me complete with a winner on each day of the carnival,” Payne said.
“I feel very proud of that.”
Payne was quick to recognise Brendan Tohill, the manager of Shergar Thoroughbreds, for giving her the opportunity aboard Tavi Bay.
Tohill also part-owns Queen Of Zealand, the filly Payne also trains, and who had been in line for a start in the VRC Oaks.
“Brendan has taken me on as stable rider for Shergar Thoroughbreds so it’s great to get a winner for him on Oaks day,” Payne said.
“It’s been a long-range plan to get her here for this race and it’s great when those plans are realised.”
Dwyer landed his first carnival winner at Flemington and said the race had been picked out for Tavi Bay right from the time the mare came into work three months ago.