A promising Ascot carnival got even brighter for trainer Darren McAuliffe with the emergence of another feature race prospect at Ascot on Wednesday.
With boom filly Clairvoyance, McAuliffe already boasts one of the hottest talents in Australia, but he looks to have unearthed another promising three-year-old in Solaia.
The Toronado filly vindicated McAuliffe’s high rating of her and showed why she can be legitimate force in major races with a dominant win in the Crown Perth Handicap (1200m).
Defying a betting drift, Solaia, ridden by Jade McNaught, unleashed a burst of speed in the straight and defeated her nearest rival Angelic Miss by two lengths.
Solaia posted her second win from five starts and first since she won on debut over 1200m at Bunbury in March.
McAuliffe heaped praise on Solaia and said she was a horse with a big upside.
“She is an elite horse and two or three classes above the rest of these, not being disparaging, that’s just where she’s at, it’s fact.” McAuliffe said.
“I’ve said a long time ago she has the Guineas at her mercy. That’s my honest opinion. I just think she is a very, very good horse.
“She will go straight across to the fillies races now, there was no point running into Clairvoyance over 1200m in a Belgravia.
“The benefit of going here today on a Wednesday is she gets a bit better spacing into Melbourne Cup day and the Burgess Queen.
“She will be very hard to beat in that.”
Meanwhile McAuliffe said Clairvoyance had overcome a foot abscess and is on track to maintain her unbeaten status in Saturday’s Listed Belgravia Stakes (1200m).
A raging $1.60 favourite with Tabtouch, the daughter of Nostradamus, to start from the second-widest gate in the field of 11 runners, is after her fifth straight win.
“She had an abscess about 10 days ago and it came out within 24 hours,” McAuliffe said.
“We put a bar shoe on the near fore, it’s not on both fronts.
“It’s just a precautionary thing.”
After opening at $51, Solaia is now a $17 chance for the WA Guineas.
The Group 2 event over 1600m will be run on November 21.