Jockey Ben Melham will be recommending a spell for unbeaten filly Eurack after she kept her record intact with a narrow win at Sandown.
After wins at Bendigo and Sandown last month, Eurack made it three on the trot as the $1.90 favourite in the Heritage Finance Handicap (1000m) on Wednesday.
While her previous victories had been by comfortable margins, she only had a half-neck to spare over Wind Force.
“It’s was a good, solid win as the runner-up kicked away down the hill and I had to get to the bottom of her,” Melham said.
“I think she’s probably earned a spell now.
“She’s done a good job in her first preparation and she’ll come back a really nice horse.”
Trainer Nathan McPherson said he had never been so nervous before a race.
He explained Eurack and stablemate Hunting Hill had got away from him at trackwork two-and-a-half weeks ago and he was worried how much a toll it had taken on the mare.
“They scooted around the track and she put six (lengths) on him as they went past the first time,” McPherson said.
“Knowing how big my track is I was a bit worried coming to the 1000 metres here again and I was conservative with her in the past two weeks.
“My heart was in my mouth at one stage there, but we’ve got the job done so we’ll see how much that takes out of her.”
McPherson said Eurack added another string to her bow by chasing down Wind Force who had been racing well in stronger benchmark 78 grade races.
He said the victory and the way she had been working gives McPherson heart she will stretch out to at least 1200m.
“I know it’s great to be winning by heaps of lengths but to win in that manner today, to chase down that horse, is great,” McPherson said.
“It’s only her third start and she’s going to learn a lot more.”