Kris Lees isn’t sure whether Zetarita can reach the heights of her dam Onemorezeta, but so far the filly is proving a carbon copy of her mother.
Both horses were beaten on debut at country tracks, broke their maidens at their second runs at Muswellbrook then made the steep transition to metropolitan grade with city victories at their third starts.
Zetarita’s ($5.50) came at Gosford on Wednesday when she claimed the opening race by a half-length over the highly regarded Hoover Lucy ($3.80 fav) with Arthur Francis ($7.50) another length away.
Lees also prepared Onemorezeta, who went on to clinch a Group Three victory at her fourth start, and while he stopped short of committing Zetarita to an immediate stakes test, he does believe she can continue her progression through the grades.
“Her mum went and won a stakes race at her next start,” Lees told Sky Thoroughbred Central.
“I don’t know where we’ll go with this filly but she’s a progressive filly. She just needed to take that next step, which she’s done.
“She’s a really professional filly and it’s nice to see her get a city win next to her name so early in her career.
“She has been a work in progress, but she’s really started to hit her straps and I think she’s got a bright future.”
The Chris Waller-trained Solar Apex also signalled he could progress to bigger things, outclassing his rivals to claim The Agency Real Estate Handicap (1900m).
Spelled after he finished down the track in the SA Derby, Solar Apex is unbeaten in two starts this preparation and winning jockey James Mcdonald says he is ready for the bar to be raised.
“Two in a row now, he’s ready to tackle some better company and I’m sure he’ll get his chance over the spring,” McDonald said
“He’s in really good form, he’s a confidence horse and he loves the (firm) ground and he loves the trip.”