9.3.19

Zoustar filly Sunlight wins second Group 1

Sunlight - part-owned by Qatar Bloodstock Ltd - won her second Group 1 in the Newmarket Handicap at Flemington on Saturday.

Sunlight is one of several flagship performers for Zoustar, who is currently covering the Northern Hemisphere breeding season alngside the other Qatar Racing stallions at Tweenhills in Gloucestershire. She adopted her customary front-running tactics in the Newmarket and maintained her advantaged right to the line in a stunning display of speed and determination, beating 21 rivals – headed by Osborne Bulls who had finished in front of Sunlight when the pair were placed in the Lightning Stakes (1000m) the time before.

Sunlight became the first of her age (3-year-old) and sex to win the Newmarket since Alinghi in 2005.

With Sunlight carrying a light weight (7-9) she also had a new jockey, with Singapore-based, South African-born Barend Vorster replacing regular rider Luke Currie – Vorster moved to Australia to join Sunlight’s trainer Tony McEvoy in January after South Australia’s leading jockey Jamie Kah decided to freelance.

McEvoy said about Sunlight:

"Isn't she something special?”

"She's an incredible filly. She keeps stepping up to the plate and the further she gets into her preparation the better she gets.

"She was so strong at the end of 1200 metres today.

"I know she only had 50.5 kilos but she is a 3-year-old filly and they were touting it to be one of the best fields.

"She's proven to be a star before today, and she has confirmed it today."

Sunlight was consigned by Widden Stud to the 2017 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale where she was bought for $300,000 by Aquis/McEvoy Mitchell Racing/Blue Sky Bloodstock. Sunlight’s dam Solar Charged was knocked down to Widden Stud/Qatar Bloodstock for $650,000 in 2014, while Sunlight's 2-year-old sister Sisstar who was purchased by McEvoy Mitchell Racing/David Redvers Bloodstock for $600,000 in 2018 and came fourth in a Group 3 on debut last November.