MIGHTY mare More Joyous will be given her chance for Doncaster Mile redemption next month after the five-time Group 1 winner made a dazzling return to the races yesterday on the first day of the Autumn Carnival.
Off the scene since an uncharacteristically low-key Spring, Sydney’s undisputed queen of the turf was at her brilliant best defending her Group 2 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) crown in front of an adoring crowd.
A winner of 16 of her 23 starts and well over $2m, the daughter of super sire More Than Ready will tackle the rich Doncaster Mile at Randwick on April 21.
More Joyous finished down the track in last year’s Doncaster owing to a very heavy track surface – the only Achilles’ heel in another impregnable exterior.
”She has 57.5kg in the Doncaster; for a mare with her record she is very well weighted,” trainer Gai Waterhouse said.
”She will have one more run before the Doncaster. We will be back here in two weeks on Slipper Day, but I have to talk it over with (owner) John Singleton and (racing manager) Duncan Grimley about which race she runs in.”
Regular partner Nash Rawiller was full of praise for More Joyous after her thrilling Canterbury Stakes victory, their 13th win together since that unforgettable 5.3-lens debut at Rosehill in the summer of 2009.
”I just love her to death,” Rawiller said.
”She’s a great mare and she has been very good to me.
”I’d love her to win a really big race like the Doncaster Mile this autumn; that would cap her career.”