Perfect Reflection raced her way into equal favouritism for the Perth Cup with a stunning victory in the G2 Ted van Heemst Stakes (2100m) at Ascot on Saturday.
Tearaway front-runner Fathoms Of Gold nearly stole the race after booting the best part of 15 lengths clear turning the corner but couldn’t hold off the More Than Ready mare and jockey Willie Pike.
“The leader had us all under the pump,” Pike admitted. “I was locked away on the fence and didn’t think we were going to get there until a few strides from the post.”
Perfect Reflection was voted WA Champion 3YO in 2015-16 and she returned this season to win the G2 Lee-Steere Stakes prior to Group 1 placings in the Railway Stakes and Kingston Town Classic.
Bookmakers installed her a $3 equal favourite for the Perth Cup (2400m), however, owner-breeder Bob Peters isn’t committed to a start on December 31. “The weight is a worry,” he explained. “She will have to carry the same as Delicacy last year and she’s no Delicacy.”
Peters has now won the Ted van Heemst Stakes five times. He won the event with Old Money, Lords Ransom, Elite Belle & Delicacy when it was known as the C B Cox Stakes.
Perfect Reflection is the third stakes winner for Vinery sire More Than Ready and Bluebird mare Reflected Image following New Image (LR Belmont Oaks) and Ideal Image (LR Burgess Queen Stakes).
Peters raced Reflected Image to a Group 2 victory in the 1999 WA Oaks.
The Perth result followed more black-type for More Than Ready in South Africa on Friday with Readytogorightnow in the LR Memorial Mile (1600m) at Fairview. He led from the outset to score a comfortable victory over former stablemates True Master and Jet Explorer.
Readytogorightnow descends from blue-hen broodmare Denise’s Joy and is closely related to Group 1 champion More Joyous (More Than Ready). He had won twice at Group 3 level for owner Hassen Adams before transferring from Justin Snaith to East Cape trainer Tara Lang.
Adams won the G1 Queen’s Plate with Gimmethegreenlight and the son of More Than Ready is off to a successful start at stud in South Africa.