IN Racing
Inspirational Girl nabs All-Star Mile start
Inspirational Girl has grasped the opportunity to land a berth in the A$5 million All-Star Mile field
NZ Racing Desk | March 05, 2022
Inspirational Girl downs Zaaki (obscured) to win the Gr.2 Blamey Stakes

Inspirational Girl grasped the opportunity to land a berth in the A$5 million All-Star Mile field when she narrowly defeated favourite Zaaki in a thrilling edition of the Gr.2 Blamey Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday.

The Group One winning daughter of Reliable Man was having just her third start in 15 months due to injury, and put the writing on the wall with a good fresh-up sixth in the Gr.1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) last start.

Prepared by Danny O’Brien for owner Bob Peters, the former Perth-trained mare was perfectly ridden by Damian Lane, who got down to 53 kilos to ride the six-year-old mare in the win-and-you’re-in (the All-Star Mile) race.

Inspirational Girl found room in the straight when jockey Damian Lane angled her off the fence and trainer Danny O'Brien said he was holding his breath at the time, with the mare prevailing by a short-neck from the $2.30 favourite Zaaki with Corner Pocket ($7.50) a further 1-¾ lengths away third.

Lane said under the conditions of Saturday's race Inspirational Girl was well weighted, adding it was a well-thought-out plan by O'Brien to target the race.

“She probably took a bit closer position than what we thought and because of that she was three back on the fence and in a sticky spot. She got out in time and she has run down a top class horse in Zaaki which is very hard to do,” a relieved O’Brien said.

“She hasn’t done a lot of racing over the last year and a half. She is a mare who should improve out of this as well as what she did out of the first up run.

“Two weeks to the All Star Mile is just a perfect step for her. She’ll have had the two runs and be third up into the All Star Mile now that she gets her start in it. We’ll certainly have no excuses for her on All Star Mile Day.”

O’Brien was not surprised the mare handled the Soft 6 surface given her pedigree.

“She is by Reliable Man but she hasn’t been exposed to a lot of soft tracks. But Miami Bound, who we had who was by Reliable Man, was an elite wet tracker. We were hopeful she would get through it and I am sure she has handled it well.”

Bookmakers promoted Inspirational Girl onto the second line of betting for the All-Star Mile at $5.50 behind Zaaki ($3.20) after she scored her first win in Melbourne.

The winner of the Gr.1 Railway Stakes (1600m), Inspirational Girl has now won ten of her 15 starts and been placed on three occasions.

Inspirational Girl was purchased by John Chalmers for $190,000 at the 2017 New Zealand Bloodstock National Yearling Sales from the draft of Jamieson Park.

Out of the Zabeel mare Be Inspired, Inspirational Girl is a half-sister to Listed winner Reuttiger and Group Three-placed Brookspire in addition to multiple winners Allez Bien and It’s Our Showtime.

It is also the family of the Nigel Tiley-trained Group Two winner Demonetization, Perth Cup winner Midnight Blue, Group Three winner Rainbow Styling and dual stakes winner Zingaling.

Jamieson Park will offer a half-sister to Inspirational Girl (Lot 116) from the first crop of US Navy Flag at the forthcoming New Zealand Bloodstock National Yearling Sales which commence at Karaka on Monday from 11am.

All-Star Mile Inspirational Girl Zaaki Reliable Man Danny O’Brien Bob Peters Damian Lane