Canterbury Park’s solitary midweek juvenile event on Wednesday in metropolitan Sydney witnessed two highly promising 2-year-olds fight out the finish of the $50,000, Pinatubo New To Darley Plate (1200m) when the aptly-named Billiondollarbaby defeated Port Louis in an entertaining tussle over the final stages of Race 2 on the program.
A daughter of Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap and Tattersall’s Tiara winner Srikandi purchased for $600,000 as a weanling and then $1,000,000 again as a yearling, Billiondollarbaby made her eagerly awaited first racetrack appearance and didn’t disappoint.
After showing excellent early speed to dictate terms through the early stages, the ultra-valuable daughter of I Am Invincible turned for home still with a great deal to give under a considerate Kerrin McEvoy ride.
Once asked to find a turn of foot entering the final 250m, Billiondollarbaby was always doing enough to hold off the strong late challenge of Port Louis to win without appearing to be fully extended.
An eye-catching minor placegetter on debut, Port Louis received plenty of support to breakthrough for his maiden success and was afforded every chance by Hugh Bowman.
However, it was Billiondollarbaby that possessed the most tactical speed at both ends of the contest, and the promising son of Maurice (Jpn) had to be satisfied with second place. His turn seems sure to come sooner rather than later nonetheless, especially if stepped up in distance and produced on a more expansive circuit.
Leen Fox finished a promising third in the cerise colours of the Ingham family and showed enough to be winning races ‘down the track’.
Speaking after the filly’s victory, winning co-trainer Peter Snowden described Billiondollarbaby as a ball of energy still very much learning what racing is all about.
Winning rider Kerrin McEvoy was very much of the same opinion about a natural talent that appears to have any amount of inherent ability and the capabilities to live right up to her hefty price-tag.
Billiondollarbaby was sent to post the $3.70 second favourite behind runner-up Port Louis ($2.10). Third placed Leen Fox started at $9.00.
Winning time on a Soft 6 was 1m11.14s (last 600m 35.79s).
Official margins were a 1 Len x 3-3/4 Len.
Billiondollarbaby is raced by Greg Ingham’s GPI Racing concern and, like the minor placegettter Leen Fox, sported a set of silks synonymous with Bob & Jack Ingham’s former racing empire.
Pinatubo New To Darley, photo finish picture ATC