A stronger and more mature Steps In Time showed she is ready to live up to her Group One potential with a brilliant defence of the Wiggle Stakes at Warwick Farm.
The five-year-old went into Saturday’s Listed race off a last-start victory over Red Tracer in the Group Two NSW Thoroughbred Breedes’ Stakes on February 16 with the runner-up since claiming the Millie Fox Stakes.
Nash Rawiller was entrusted to steer Steps In Time after a mix-up left Jim Cassidy without a ride in the Wiggle (1400m).
And steer is pretty much all Rawiller was required to do as Steps In Time, favourite at $2.50, jumped straight to the front and stretched her advantage mid-race.
She didn’t let up and held off three Group One winners as she hit the line 3-1/4 lengths in front of Streama ($3.30) with Pear Tart ($15) another short neck third and Appearance fourth.
“Being on top of the ground helped her,” trainer John O’Shea said.
“And all the indications in her pedigree are that she will get better as she gets older.
“She is from the family that produced Glamour Puss and Vision And Power.
“She will get a bit of weight in the Coolmore now but that’s where we are going.
“She is a mare in form and in a great frame of mind.”
The mares behind her are also going to the Group One Coolmore Classic (1500m) on March 23 and trainer Guy Walter was pleased with Streama and Apperance.
“The leader just went too fast,” Walter said.
“It’s onwards and upwards to the Coolmore.
“Hugh (Bowman) was pleased with Streama and Appearance came from well back and her run was good.”
O’Shea said there had been a misunderstanding about the Cassidy booking.
“It was unfortunate and I feel sorry for Jimmy,” he said.
“It was just a miscommunication.”
O’Shea said plans for Steps In Time included a break after the Coolmore to prepare for the Brisbane winter carnival.