After going close to winning a Group One in Sydney earlier this year, Xilong has again shown her quality to score a determined win in the Group Two Euclase Stakes at Morphettville.
Only 40 minutes after her stablemate Shrouded In Mist led to win the Group Two Queen Of The South Stakes (1600m), the Tony and Calvin McEvoy-trained Xilong did likewise in the Euclase (1200m) for three-year-olds.
With blinkers on for the first time and with added fitness on her side second-up from a let-up after her fourth in the Redelva Stakes, Xilong bounced to the front under Barend Vorster and was able to rally when it mattered to hold off favourite Garner.
Xilong ($4.60) pressed her claims for a start in the Group One Goodwood in two weeks, defeating Garner ($3.10) by a half head with I Am Eloquent ($13) half a length away third.
It was the second stakes win for Xilong, who won the Listed Twilight Glow (1400m) at Sandown last spring, while in February she finished a close third in the Group One Surround Stakes in Sydney first-up from a spell.
“Nothing has gone right for her this preparation, even going back to Sydney,” Calvin McEvoy said.
“She missed a lead-up run before the Group One in Sydney.
“She missed a trial going into her first-up run the other day and we knew she would have benefited fitness-wise so much going into today.
“It was a beautiful ride by Barend.
“She pinged the gates with blinkers on for the first time and really had to do all the work. It was a really tough win.”