Autumn Ballet set to target Flight Stakes

Autumn Ballet has landed a ‘bonus’ first-up win in the Silver Shadow Stakes in what connections are hoping could be the start of a lucrative campaign.

Co-trainer Adrian Bott said while he expected the filly to run well, he had anticipated her improving as she got deeper into the four-race Princess Series, which culminates in the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m).

“I thought maybe this preparation she was looking for that 1400 metres, 1600 metres,” Bott said.

“She’s certainly right on track to go through the (Princess) series and I think she’s going to get better as we go through the campaign.

“She was the first horse to win the Black Opal on debut, so that spoke volumes for her class.”

Adam Hyeronimous found a beautiful position on Autumn Ballet ($16) one-out and one-back and the three-year-old did the rest, lifting to overhaul Estriella ($3.90) by a head with Kimochi ($5.50) steaming home for third, another half-head away.

Kimochi was arguably the run of the race after copping early interference then being held up until the 200m.

“I loved the way she hit the line after really getting squeezed up in the early stages, she finished very nicely,” her trainer Gary Portelli said.

Autumn Ballet was one of five Silver Shadow Stakes (1200m) runners for Bott and training partner Gai Waterhouse with their Oaks hopeful Amazonian Lass an eye-catching (fifth), while Summer Loving (sixth) and Platinum Jubilee (seventh) also ran boldly, with Taormina finishing tenth.

“Summer Loving was a little bit out of her ground but she worked home well,” Bott said.

“Platinum Jubilee, I think she worked home well, she’ll improve nicely off that.

“Taormina may have just found the pressure a bit too much early and come to the end of the campaign.”

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