Wonderful Winks Wins Again

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2016 Warwick Stakes result – Wonderful Winx wins again
Paul Joice – 20 Aug 2016
Champion mare Winx began her Cox Plate defence with a performance that jockey Hugh Bowman described as “probably her easiest win” when romping home with the Group II Warwick Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on Saturday.

Winx stretches her winning sequence to 10 in making the Warwick Stakes a one-act affair. Photo: Steve Hart
Winx stretched her winning sequence to 10 with victory in the $250,000 weight-for-age event, giving punters that took the $1.24 odds no reason for concern.

Bowman camped outside the leader Rebel Dane before ambling-up at the top of the rise and as the crowd roared, Bowman slipped the five-year-old some rein and away she went, putting 3-1/2 lengths on her nearest rival Hartnell ($21), which chased resolutely for team Godolphin.

Gary Portelli’s Rebel Dane ($11) held on for third a further three-quarters-of-a-length away.

Trainer Chris Waller showed his typical relief in the winner’s enclosure, perhaps more so due to the uncertain nature of Winx’s return this time after having a bone chip removed from a fetlock at the conclusion of her last campaign.

“That is the heats of the Olympics over and done with and we just have the semi-final and final to come,” Waller said.

“Her trackwork has been great, trials have been adequate and she has been brilliant the last week or so.

“I am pleased we chose Sydney to resume that’s her home and there are a few more runs to come in Sydney before she takes on Melbourne.”

Punters are likely to see Winx second-up in the Group II Chelmsford Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on September 3 with a fortnight lead-in to the Group I George Main Stakes (1600m).

Bowman plotted a trouble-free path in recording his eighth win aboard the daughter of Street Cry.

“Wow, what can I say?” he said.

“She seems to be stronger and judging by that win there’s another good prep ahead of her.

“Easiest win? It probably was but it was set up for that.

“I didn’t think a slow pace would suit her and I was concerned being first-up if I put her up and rode her like I did in the George Ryder that she might travel a bit too well but she didn’t.

“It was nothing more than a track gallop for her.”

Winx’s victory was the 14th of her career and tipped her prizemoney over the $6.8 million mark.

The Waller and Bowman combination also won this race last year with another mare – Royal Descent.

Sportsbet has Winx marked at $2.25 to defend her Cox Plate title on October 22.
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