Trainer Chris Waller is seeing shades of top-class mares Red Tracer and Catkins in Zumbelina after she put her third-straight win on the board.
The filly shouldered 60kg on her way to winning Saturday’s three-year-old benchmark handicap over 1400m at Rosehill.
Waller is plotting a similar path to the three-year-old autumn campaigns of Red Tracer and Catkins who both won the PJ Bell Stakes before contesting the James Carr Stakes.
Catkins was runner-up in the 2011 James Carr while Red Tracer won it in 2013.
“I can see a bit of Catkins and Red Tracer in her,” Waller said.
The star mares went on to have decorated careers with Red Tracer winning two Group One races.
Popular grey Catkins never broke through at the top level, but her strong stakes performances over five seasons saw her amass more than $2 million in prize money.
Although it seemed Zumbelina might be stuck in a pocket entering the straight, there was no sign of panic from young Kiwi rider Rory Hutchings on the $1.70 favourite.
As clear running eventuated, Hutchings urged her into the fight at the 300m and she put her three rivals away with a minimum of fuss, winning by three-quarters of a length from Fiery Trail ($5).
“She had to accelerate with the big weight and get herself out of a little position but it was pretty painless,” Waller said.
Waller said he was tempted to run Zumbelina in a set weights three-year-old race in two weeks, but the two Group Three races next year would be a priority.
Hutchings said there would be more improvement to come from Zumbelina.