Trainer Kelso Wood warned there was a lot of improvement in his two-year-old filly Criquette after she scored an easy win at Doomben on Saturday.
Corporate bookmakers offered as much as $3.30 about Criquette when betting opened on Wednesday but the weight of money saw her start a $1.30 favourite.
Criquette justified the support when she came from the outside barrier to lead all the way and beat Happy Event ($21) by 2-3/4 lengths in the Angrove Family Winemakers Handicap (1050m).
“She is a nice filly and has been well educated. I would have liked to have given her another jump-out but in the end I decided to use this race as the jump-out,” Wood said.
“The only real worry was she drew the outside barrier … and usually they can’t win from there. But I felt she had the pace to clear the field and that is how it turned out.”
Criquette is heading towards the Magic Millions 2YO Classic at the Gold Coast in January but the route she will take is still up in the air.
Wood won the race with Real Surreal in 2013 and his galloper Prince Regent was first past the post in 1988 only to lose on protest.
The filly, who is by top sire I Am Invincible, was bred by Sydney trainer Ron Quinton and was sold for $240,000 at the Magic Millions sales last year.
Criquette is raced by a syndicate that includes Jenny Morgan and Diane Devine, wives of prominent owners Neville Morgan and David Devine.
The families have raced many good horses with Wood including Group One winner Sizzling who ran fourth in the 2012 Magic Millions.