Music Mistress looking to go back to back

A tropical vacation could end on the perfect note for trainer Amanda Telfer with victory in the Group Three Fillies Classic at Ascot Park today.

Telfer has been based in Southland since Music Mistress ran to an impressive victory in her second career start at the same track last week.

Telfer and her classy two-year-old have encountered a wide range of Southland weather conditions during their stay, but they have done nothing to knock Music Mistress’s progress. 

“She seems good, I am happy with where she is at and what she is doing,” Telfer said.

“I have just ticked her over this week, I haven’t done a lot with her.”

“She is going into the race 100%.”

Driver Tim Williams pushed forward to lead easily with Music Mistress in last start victory. 

After securing barrier 2 in Saturday’s feature, the pair’s early tactics look reasonably obvious.

“I was quite happy when the draw came out, I haven’t really spoken to Tim about the race, but he will drive his own race obviously,” Telfer said.

Music Mistress was the first two-year-old filly to race in New Zealand in 2024 when she debuted at Winton last month. 

While she has always shown talent, she has also benefitted from being an early project for Telfer and her brother and training partner, Steve. 

“She was on to her second preparation when we started breaking in our yearlings from the sales.”

“So, her and her mate were always advanced.”

Cormac Leo has been going in the opposite direction to Music Mistress ahead of today’s Northern Southland Autumn Cup. 

The Southland pacer headed to Canterbury and produced an incredible win when sitting parked throughout to beat a handy field at Addington.

Back in his home province, the pacer will have his first standing start in today’s feature for older pacers.

After stepping away well in a recent workout, trainer-driver Craig Ferguson is hopeful Cormac Leo can get away on terms with his rivals today.

“At the workouts he felt like he could have stepped away a lot quicker, but he was only there to get his ticket, so we took it quietly,” Ferguson said. 

“I am pretty hopeful he will be able to do things right on Saturday.”

Cormac Leo’s last start win suggests he is right up to stepping up in class in the Northern Southland Autumn Cup.

Everything he is showing his trainer suggests he is.

“His work has been really good, this race will tell us if he is going to measure up.”

“But going by his work, compared to other horses I have in this grade, he should be pretty competitive.”

Ferguson also lines up the consistent mare Nutcracker in the Northern Southland Autumn Cup.

The speedy pacer looks a genuine top-four threat.

“Drawing the inside on the 10m mark is the only question mark,” Ferguson said. 

“She is working as well as she ever has, if she was able to step away and get a nice run she should be thereabouts.”

Mark Hurrell takes the reins behind Nutcracker today.


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