Sargent chasing further Wakeful success with Harlow Mist

The John Sargent-trained Harlow Mist will contest Saturday’s Group 2 Wakeful Stakes (2000m) Photo: Bruno Cannatelli

Trainer John Sargent is well-regarded as a master trainer of fillies, and the affable Kiwi expat has a strong contender in Saturday’s Group 2 Wakeful Stakes (2000m) at Flemington in Harlow Mist.

The daughter of Mapperley Stud stallion Contributer was a strong winner of the Oaks Preview (1800m) at Flemington on September 24 and is a +500 third favourite for Saturday’s contest in a market headed by Zardozi (+170).

Following her Flemington victory Harlow Mist returned to Sydney where Sargent gave the filly a hit-out over 1550m on the Kensington track when third to City Of Lights in what was an in-between run.

“We just had to give a win away there to have another race,” Sargent said.

“It was a walk over the road to Randwick, she came through it and was back in the box having her dinner half an hour later. She’s come through it great, and I’ve just been ticking her over. She had a final gallop on Wednesday morning and she should be in top order for Saturday.”

Sargent knows what it takes to win a Wakeful, having saddled three winners of the race in Kirramosa, Thunder Lady and Luvaluva.

“She’s probably more like Kirramosa. She’s quite a light filly and medium sized. The other two were quite big mares and real typical New Zealand staying types,” Sargent said.

“This is a smaller type of horse, but she has got a big heart, is a very good eater and she has got a great constitution so that makes her nice and easy to train.”

Sargent will decide after Saturday whether he pushes on with Harlow Mist to Thursday’s Group 1 VRC Oaks (2500m).

“If she does well enough, she will but if we’re not happy with her in the few days afterwards we won’t but it’s a good recipe going to both races,” Sargent said.

Bred by the Hawkins family of Wentwood Grange, Harlow Mist was purchased as a yearling for $85,000 by Tricolours Racing & Syndications from the Cambridge nursery’s Karaka 2022 draft and has a proven staying pedigree.

Out of the stakes-placed mare Sila Jasak, Harlow Mist’s granddam is the champion galloper Grand Archway, who won both the Group 1 VRC Oaks (2500m) and the Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) among her four elite-level victories.

While Harlow Mist will be seen at Flemington on Saturday, stablemate So Dazzling, who finished an eye-catching fifth in the Group 2 Moonee Valley Gold Cup (2500m), will wait another week for the Group 3 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2600m) on Champions Day at Flemington.

“We’ve always aimed her for the last day, she’ll go to the Queen Elizabeth with Dean Yendall on again,” Sargent said.

“It was a very good run in the Moonee Valley Cup, that’ll top her off nicely for Saturday week.

“She loves it that way round (Melbourne) and she loves 2600m or more.

“I just want to give her a pretty easy spring. She’ll have that run and then go out and then we’ll aim her for the autumn here (in Sydney).

“She’s coming back to what she used to be — she went off form for a little while — but she’s really hit her straps and has done well since that Moonee Valley Cup. Dean Yendall will gallop her again on Saturday and she should be right for the following week.”

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