More Than Ready colt Prized Icon has completed a meteoric rise to Group 1 ranks in the Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Randwick.
Prized Icon took the field up to tearaway leader El Sicario and then lengthened for a decisive one-length victory over Chimboraa (Congrats) and Divine Prophet (Choisir) on Saturday. The James Cummings trained colt was a maiden before winning the LR Fernhill Hcp (1600m) last week and he handled the seven-day turnaround like a professional.
“He was going on the float to Mudgee but I decided to pay a late-entry for the Champagne,” Cummings said. “He loves training and he loves work. He’s a prize fighter.”
Prized Icon is the 18th Group 1 winner by More Than Ready and the 5th Group 1 winner by the Vinery champion out of a Danehill mare. “I trained him to peak last week,” Cummings added. “But I backed him up because he looked too good to go out for a spell.”
A Gooree Stud homebred, he is one of three stakes winners from Tropical Affair (1997 Maribyrnong Trial Stakes) following Matras (Zabeel) and Romantic Moon (More Than Ready).
More Than Ready sired his first Australia Group 1 winner when first-crop filly Carry On Cutie was successful in the 2005 Champagne Stakes. And Cummings is now a fourth generation Group 1 trainer following Jim, Bart and Anthony.
Earlier on Saturday, More Than Ready produced promising juvenile winner Evacuation in the Kids Day Out Hcp (1000m) at Kembla Grange. The Gai Waterhouse debutant jumped straight to the front and spaced his rivals in a slick 56.20s.
Evacuation won by almost four lengths from All In Rhythm (More Than Ready) for Highgrove Stud’s Ron Gilbert. The Queensland owner-breeder retained the three-quarter brother to LR Canberra Guineas winner Interspersed after he failed to reach a $150,000 reserve at the 2015 Inglis Easter yearling sale.