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Oohood displays exquisite timing to take Flight

3 min read

Written by Paul Vettise

Australasia’s best maiden is no more. A perennial but highly valuable placegetter until Saturday, Oohood (I Am Invincible) shed that unwanted tag when she dived late to win the G1 Darley Flight S., in a pulsating finish.

The Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum-bred and owned filly had banked more than $1 million from her previous nine appearances, chiefly through finishing in the money in last season’s G1 Blue Diamond Prelude S., the G1 Golden Slipper S., and the G1 ATC Sires’ Produce S.

That so close and yet to so far storyline was rewritten at Randwick where Oohood’s watershed moment was greeted with elation and relief by trainer Tony McEvoy.

“Coming up the straight I thought here we go again, we’re going to get beaten, but thank God she stuck her nose out for us.” – Tony McEvoy.

“Coming up the straight I thought here we go again, we’re going to get beaten, but thank God she stuck her nose out for us,” he said.

“All her runs have been pass marks and she’s been behind in her coat and when I saw her gallop on Tuesday I thought that’s the best she’s looked and worked.

“I thought she was stiff in the Blue Diamond, stiff in the Slipper and the Sires. There’s not a lot of her, but she shows great tenacity.”

Powerful finishing burst

Oohood raced back in the pack and wide and, when asked for the supreme effort down the straight, she responded impressively and whistled home to nab Fiesta (I Am Invincible) on the post.

Black type newcomer Nakeeta Jane (So You Think {NZ}) gave a bold account of herself by coming from the tail of the field to cut the favourite Miss Fabulass (Frankel {GB}) out of third. She raced keenly and was gallant after hitting the front on the turn.

McEvoy said Oohood had met and matched the colts and geldings last season and she will get her opportunity to double her Group 1 tally against them next time out.

“She’ll run in the Caulfield Guineas and take on the boys again. She’s beaten the best colts in her 2-year-old days and we’ll see if she can do it again.”

“She’ll run in the Caulfield Guineas and take on the boys again. She’s beaten the best colts in her 2-year-old days and we’ll see if she can do it again.” – Tony McEvoy.

Tim Clark has ridden Oohood in all four of her starts this term and he was delighted she now had a Group 1 credit to her name.

“Obviously, it’s very exciting and she came so close as a 2-year-old in the Slipper and the Sires,” he said.

“She’s been running well and we’ve been trying to ride her close up, but maybe she’s better ridden a bit quieter. All credit to Tony and the team; they’ve done a terrific job.”