The temptation of a second successive VRC Oaks was placed before trainer Robert Smerdon by the impressive filly Bloomingdale Miss at Caulfield on Saturday.
While Bloomingdale Miss isn’t in the same mould as her stablemate Mosheen who won last year’s Oaks and then enjoyed a stellar autumn, Smerdon is confident she can improve on her win in the Metro Solar Handicap (1400m).
“I’m pretty sure she’ll get over a lot more ground,” Smerdon said.
“The thing I’m concerned about is that a race like the Oaks might just come a bit too soon for her.
“But it will be in my mind, the dream’s alive.”
Bloomingdale Miss ($4) led throughout to win by 1-1/4 lengths from Walk With Attitude ($7) who held the same advantage over the $3.40 favourite Mareeza in third place.
As delighted as he was with his filly’s performance, Smerdon was equally pleased with the ride of jockey Michael Rodd.
“The plan was to be positive and then have a breather mid-race,” he said.
“He rode her just as we’d planned. It doesn’t always happen that way.”
Another perfect ride got the handy mare Let’s Be Happy home in the Hocking Stuart Handicap (1400m).
This time the praise went to jockey Danny Nikolic whose flash of enterprise 700m from home made all the difference.
“I sensed they were trying to ease the pace so I took off and it worked,” Nikolic said.
Let’s Be Happy ($17) kept going to score by a 1-3/4 lengths from Biancon Rose ($5).