Mime (NZ) (Mastercraftsman) has drawn level with Sofia Rosa (NZ) (Makfi) as the leading fillies prepare to go head to head in the Group One New Zealand Oaks later this month.
From the family of 1990s multiple Group race winner Waikiki (NZ) (Crested Wave), the filly won yesterday’s Group Three McKee Family Sunline Vase to join Sofia Rosa at the top of the table on 14 points in the race for the New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year crown with the 2400 metre classic at Trentham on March 19 the final event of the series.
Mime did it the hard way to claim Te Rapa’s Group Two Sir Tristram Fillies’ Classic at her previous appearance after racing three wide without cover but this time, at Ellerslie, she enjoyed an economical run from an inside barrier.
The grey raced in third spot and one off the fence before rider Michael Coleman pulled out to improve across the top.
“We had a lovely trip and she relaxed nicely,” he said. “I got out a bit early when the one I was following wasn’t going anywhere and my horse cruised into it and won well.”
Trained by Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, Mime is out of a mare by the noted staying influence Montjeu and Coleman is confident she will handle the Oaks trip.
“She’s been really consistent at all distances and she ran 2100 metres out very well today,” he said.
Mime was in front 150 metres from home and held a strong gallop to again beat Promise To Reign (Manhattan Rain), runner-up in the Sir Tristram, while the front-runner Maritimo (NZ) (Pins) stuck on well for third. Next home was Duchess Kate (NZ) (Savabeel), who had every chance while the winner’s stablemate Coldplay (NZ) (Savabeel) made ground fairly from the back for fifth without ever looking a threat.