WATERHOUSE and Bott-trained filly Invincible Star looks set for big spring carnival after taking out the Group Three Thoroughbred Club Stakes at Caulfield in stunning fashion.
Jumping from barrier 15 carrying top weight, The I Am Invincible three-year-old steamrolled out of the gates to find a prominent position, settled beautifully in the run then delivering a withering burst in the straight to win comfortably and return $5.90 at William Hill.
Counterplay ($4.80 at Sportsbet) made its first-ever third-up run one to remember after finishing in second, while classy Godolphin filly Jorda rounded out the placings to return $2.10 via Crownbet.
Jockey Stephen Baster said overcoming barrier 15 was the key to victory for Invincible Star.
“Obviously the barrier was the worry,” Baster said.
“I was blessed she began well and overcame that pretty quick in the first 100m or so, so once I was there and travelling easy I knew she was pretty hard to beat.”
Baster admitted Invincible Star had the class advantage over the field.
“She got caught deep last start, that’s all I worried about today otherwise I thought she’d be too good for them.
“Credit to Gai and Adrian, she looked fantastic in the yard today so I think she’s come on well from her last run.”
The win was the second victory of the horse’s career across four starts, where the horse has remarkably never placed outside saluting. It was the second group success in Melbourne after taking out the Group Three Ottawa Stakes in 2016.
Co-trainer Gai Waterhouse said the horse will remain at the sprint distance.
“(She’s) a fabulous filly,” Waterhouse said.
“She won of course a group three, the two-year-old race last year at Flemington and it was lovely to see her come back … she’ll probably be able to run a mile but I’ll keen her at a shorter distance at present.”
Waterhouse said the team was keen to bring the horse south to attack the group races over the 1200m journey.
“I specifically brought her to Melbourne for these sprint races with the fillies.
“They’ve got a beautiful program for them and it paid dividends.”