Debut win for Espaaniyah in the $500,000 Inglis Banner
Emirates Park 2018 yearling sale purchase Espaaniyah produced a near-flawless performance on debut when leading from start-to-finish to land the $500,000 Inglis Banner (1000m) — the opening event of the day on the W.S. Cox Plate program at Moonee Valley in Melbourne.
A beautifully-bred daughter of I Am Invincible from a family widely associated with the former Woodlands empire of Jack and Bob Ingham, Espaaniyah went in to the contest as the $3.70 favourite and won in the style of a high-class juvenile.
Bounced straight to the lead by Tim Clark, Espaaniyah virtually controlled the race every stride of the way before surging clear of her rivals in the short Moonee Valley straight. The Emirates Park-owned filly went on to score by two clear lengths and, if anything, was doing her best work at the finish.
Winning rider Tim Clark revealed after the win: “This is a filly that I’ve had to do a little bit with at home and I was really keen to come and ride her. I think she’s pretty smart.”
In reference to the winning co-training team of Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott, Clark added: “Gai and Adrian have a lot [of two-year-olds] come through the stable and you try to identify the early comers. This filly is really switched on and she was really forward going. I think she’s got a bright future. I really like her a lot.”
Co-trainer Adrian Bott said after the win: “[Espaaniyah is] A really nice filly to start the day with, it was a really professional performance. She’s obviously come on leaps and bounds since coming down [from Sydney] to Melbourne. We saw that with her jump-out performance and it’s nice to see her win today.
“I think there’s a lot more in store for her going ahead. They [Emirates Park] are great supporters of the stable and the industry, so it’s nice to see them have a quality filly like this. They go to the sales and pick out the quality types, and she’s one of them.”
A division of the Nasser Abdulla Lootah Group