Talented filly Dear Demi remains on target for a crack at the 2012 VRC Crown Oaks after scoring an impressive in win the $175,000 Group 2 Furious Stakes (1400m) at Warwick Farm on Saturday.
The Clarry Conners-trained three-year-old was good on her return to racing when she hit the line impressively in the Group 3 Silver Shadow Stakes to finish third and she continued to improve this weekend with the extra 200 metres suiting her.
Dear Demi under James McDonald gets up to win the Furious Stakes, picture sportpix.com.au
The daughter of Dehere (USA) won the Listed Fernhill Stakes as a two-year-old before placing in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes and no doubt Conners will be pleased with her first two runs this spring.
With James McDonald on board, Dear Demi settled midfield in the run, about four lengths off race leader Single Style (Cassidy) in behind the leaders.
Rounding the turn McDonald pushed out and got underneath the well fancied Jade Marauder (Rawiller), about a length and a half off the leaders.
At the 200m Dear Demi and Jade Marauder loomed large in the centre of the track while race favourite Meidung (McEvoy) broke away from the leader making a virtual line of three by the 150m.
Over the final half furlong Dear Demi pulled clear of her rivals, holding her margin comfortably to the line to score. Officially the margin was three quarters to Meidung with a short head to Jade Marauding. The overall time was 1.22.95 with the last 600m run in 36.95.
“She was brilliant,” McDonald said. “She travelled up a lot better than last time, even though it was a bit shorter last time; the harder the fight the more she gives.
“Once she got clear she accelerated quickly, she held them at bay pretty comfortably so I am looking forward to her next start.
“Bring on the Oaks.”
While the Oaks looms large at the end of her preparation, the Flight Stakes in a fortnight is likely next on the agenda and on what she showed on Saturday she is clearly the horse to beat.
Dear Demi is out of Shirley, a daughter of Zabeel and Merlene and is owned by John Singletons Strawberry Hill Stud Syndicate. Her record has now improved to three wins and four minors from 10 starts with prizemoney totalling $373,650.