A carefully devised plan to make the Moir Stakes a major spring target for flying mare Pippie has come to fruition after she ran her rivals off their legs in the Group One sprint.
The race appeared to have an abundance of speed on paper but Pippie pinged the gates and none of her rivals were able to match her early pace.
While jockey Damian Lane had a few anxious moments when the mare came off the bridle around the home turn, he need not have worried as Pippie lifted and the backmarkers were unable to bridge the gap.
Chris Meagher, who trains Pippie in partnership with his father John, said winning Friday’s Moonee Valley feature was a relief and an honour.
“It may be a touch arrogant but I don’t care what I run her in, I know she’s going to run enormous,” Meagher said.
“She is a dead-set 10-year-old gelding at home but as soon as she bounces out of the machines she is a completely different animal.
“To win a race of this calibre is just a huge honour and I’m just rapt for everyone involved.”
A $60,000 yearling buy, Pippie has won half of her 12 starts and more than $1.2 million prize money.
Meagher was unsure of immediate plans for the five-year-old and said the Moir Stakes (1000m) had been the sole focus but if Pippie pulled up well he flagged the Manikato Stakes as a likely option.
His father John was not on track but Meagher said he would be celebrating at home.
“He will be at home on the lounge jumping up and down in his pyjamas,” Meagher said.
Lane paid tribute to Pippie’s speed and courage and said she gave him a great ride.
“You just give her some rein out of the barriers and lay on her neck and she does the rest for you,” Lane said.
“She is so fast early, obviously runs those quick sectionals and gets everything else chasing.
“I actually thought I was in a little bit of trouble on the corner when she came off the bridle but when I asked her for her max effort she dug in again.”
Pippie ($6.50) scored by three-quarters of a length over Trekking ($8), who chased gamely, with Bella Vella ($7) a solid third.
Perth mare Fabergino started favourite but never looked comfortable on the Valley circuit and finished second last.