RACING: After an initial disappointment, Sunlight has quickly shown everyone the talent her jockey Luke Currie knew she had.
Now the flying filly gets her chance to deliver on a big stage.
Sunlight was beaten as favourite on debut in the Maribyrnong Trial Stakes in October in Melbourne but has since posted two emphatic wins at the Gold Coast to be favourite for Saturday's $2million Magic Millions Classic (1200m) at the same track.
"I was disappointed in her run at Flemington. It was below what I expected of her,” Currie said. "So what she's done in her last couple is what I expected of her.
"Her Flemington run probably taught us a little bit and taught her a little bit as well.”
Currie is pleased trainer Tony McEvoy decided to run Sunlight last Saturday over 1100m when the filly powered away to win by 5½ lengths.
"I did think she needed it,” Currie said.
"She had had enough late but she still had a bit in hand.
"She got pressured mid-race, then kicked away and then idled down late. She passed the 1100-metre test with flying colours so I couldn't see off that that she would have any problem running 1200 at this point.
"I know all races, and especially two-year-old races, things sometimes don't go to plan and if she gets beaten I still think she's going to win a big race along the way.”
Sunlight will have to overcome a wide barrier but Currie is hopeful the filly has the natural speed to counter it.
"Tony doesn't think the draw is probably a big deal, but I would have liked to have drawn a bit closer,” Currie said.
"That makes it a bit tougher from out there than drawing in the inside half dozen, I thought. But she showed brilliant speed last time and I thought the positive was Ef Troop has drawn wider than her.
"I think he will try to take up a forward spot and she can probably go across with him, whether she sits off him or whether she has to keep going.”
The jockey respects the opposition but is also confident Sunlight has what it takes.
"I never go into races thinking you're just going to win, especially in those types of races,” he said.
"But I'd be disappointed if she didn't run top three.”
Despite drawing gate 15 for today's rich feature, Sunlight has been the subject of strong pre-race support and is expected to start favourite.
She is the $4 top elect in latest UBET fixed-odds markets ahead of Tony Gollan's unbeaten colt EfTroop ($4.40).
Jonker, a brilliant winner of the Magic Millions Wyong Classic, is on the next line of betting at $4.80.
Sunlight's stablemate Crockett, who will be ridden by star Adelaide hoop Jamie Kah, is rated a $26 chance.
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