Godolphin filly Popular is on track to live up to her name after winning her maiden as favourite at Warwick Farm.
The three-year-old ($3), trained by James Cummings, was an impressive winner over 1300 metres on Wednesday, a half-length in front of the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained Chain of Fools ($21) with the Chris Waller-trained Semper Fidelis ($20) another short half head third.
Popular came into the race with a second and fourth in spring barrier trials but Godolphin stable representative Nacim Dilmi says those results, boosted by her first career win, will not mean she is rushed through her grades.
“I don’t think James will be throwing her in the deep end and I’m sure there will be a nice race for her coming soon,” Dilmi said.
“It’s a learning curve and I’m sure she’ll come on from there.”
Popular ran third over 1200m on debut in April.
Jockey Brenton Avdulla said the filly was well-placed by Cummings to run a bit further and responded perfectly.
“He found her a nice 1300 metres on her home track. She did everything right early. Jumped, travelled,” he said.
“I had to go back on the inside, I didn’t really want to go back there. She was a bit new back on the fence but I think she’s quite a nice filly and she’s only going to get better.
“She’s still nowhere near where she’s probably going to be in six or 12 months. She’s only going to get better as her distances get longer and when she can strengthen a bit more.
“I’d definitely say she’s a mile, maybe a mile-and-a-quarter. But I’m not training her. I’ll leave it to Godolphin.”
Cummings’ other Warwick Farm chance, $2 favourite Marble, ran seventh of 11 in the 1000m-handicap.