Dixie Blossoms will bid to become the first mare to win the Guy Walter Stakes three times when she resumes for her final racing campaign at Randwick.
The six-year-old joined Hot Danish (2008-09) and Steps In Time (2012-13) as a dual winner of the race last year and trainer Ron Quinton said she was in great shape to defend her title on Saturday.
“The thing you’ve got to think about a little bit is they’re probably not going to get much better at this age and you’ve got to be a little bit fearful of the younger mares coming up,” Quinton said.
“But there’s been no indication in the stable that she’s not at her top so we’ve just got to wait and see with bated breath on Saturday.”
The Guy Walter Proven Thoroughbred Stakes (1400m) is named in honour of the late trainer who died suddenly five years ago after suffering a heart attack.
Walter prepared Tie The Knot to win the feature race at Saturday’s meeting, the Chipping Norton Stakes, four times between 1999-2002, a feat champion Winx will try to equal at Randwick.
Quinton remembers Walter fondly and said it would be special to again win the race named in the late trainer’s honour.
“I had great respect for Guy and his talent with horses. He was a really good fellow,” Quinton said.
“I wouldn’t have ridden for him much, but I would have ridden for him a little bit towards the end of my career.
“Wendy, his wife, will be there and it will be nice if we can win it again.”
If Dixie Blossoms wins or runs second, it will nudge her prize money tally over $1 million.
Along with stablemate Daysee Doom, Dixie Blossoms is headed towards the Group One Coolmore Classic with both mares set to be retired to stud this spring.