Miyagi a timely tonic for D Mac

Impressive Racing trainer Darren McAuliffe emerged after a horrible weekend to win a Belmont maiden with his promising 3yo filly Miyagi on Wednesday.

McAuliffe’s Group 1 star Gatting was euthanised on Saturday after breaking down in the Makybe Diva Stakes at Flemington.  His wife Emma also suffered a broken hand in a stable accident on Tuesday.

“It was a rough weekend but you’ve got to be positive and move forward,” McAuliffe said.  “Miyagi was excellent during her first prep earlier this year and she probably should have beaten Dad’s Bigheaded before going out.

“She’s small but has a tough attitude and is a very well-bred filly.  I couldn’t fault her work and was confident of a good first-up run today.”

Miyagi lived up to those expectations when she cruised to the front in the straight and kept going to win the Ascot Racing Carnival Maiden (1300m) by a length from Outback Jack (Outreach) and Ranga Roll (Gingerbread Man).

Scenic Lodge stallion Universal Ruler sired her from Shibata (Testa Rossa) whose previous foals include Hong Kong winner Jolly Amber and Impressive Racing’s Perth winner Igarashi.  Their dam is a half-sister to Kidnapped (G1 South Australian Derby), Hauraki (G1 Epsom Hcp) & Academus (G2 WA Guineas).

Fellow Scenic Lodge sire Dash For Cash landed the last race at Belmont on Wednesday with Colin Webster’s grey gelding Without Reason.  Bred and sold by Scenic Lodge for $17,000 at the 2017 Perth Magic Millions, he had last greeted the judge at Ascot in February 2019.

His dam Mystical Messenger (Blackfriars) is an unraced sister to the dam of Red Ora (LR Scenic Blast Stakes).  Second-dam Pure Instinct (Grand Lodge) is an unraced half-sister to Group 1 winners Scenic Blast and Gilded Venom.

Universal Ruler (Scenic) continues to hover at a 60% winning strike-rate.  His fee is unchanged this year at $6,600 as is Snippetson (Snippets).  Dash For Cash is available at $2,750.  (Fees inc GST) with a free return.

MIYAGI / Photo: Western Racepix