Saint Minerva Races Home To Win Grand Prix Stakes

Saturday, 30 May 2009: Connections of promising filly Saint Minerva will be wondering what could have been after she won the Group 3 Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) in impressive fashion at Eagle Farm today.

Saint Minerva's trainer Alan Bailey
Saint Minerva's trainer Alan Bailey
Photo by Racing and Sports

Also nominated for the Group 1 Queensland Oaks this afternoon, the Alan Bailey-trained filly was balloted out of the feature where she was a co-favourite in pre-post markets alongside Miss Darcey who also didn't accept for the race.

With only $18,000 in career earnings to her credit from six starts, doubts on whether she would gain a start were always with Bailey who was forced to go to plan B, run her against the boys in the Grand Prix Stakes.

The only filly in today's Grand Prix Stakes, Saint Minerva was caught as much as four deep in the early stages.

Her situation barely improved in the middle stages, despite this, the Galileo filly had plenty of fuel in the tank as they straightened for home.

The second favourite Markus Maximus received a charmed run fourth on the rail and had pinched a 2 1/2 length lead. However Saint Minerva made quick work of gobbling up the topweight by putting in a long sustained run to hit the lead at the 200m. She then galloped away to win by four lengths.

Markus Maximus held out The Grococh for second.

Today's Group 3 win further stamps Saint Minerva as an exciting prospect following two wins earlier this campaign in lesser company.

Now with approximately $100,000 in prizemoney to her credit, being balloted out of races should no longer be an issue.

After Saint Minerva's convincing win against the boys today, trainer Alan Bailey said he will consider backing her up in the BMW Queensland Derby next Saturday, but suggested a start in the Group 1 event was unlikely.