The timing of today's $80,000 Valachi Downs South Island Breeders' Stakes might not be perfect for Fairlight, but her trainer Les Didham is willing to roll the dice.
"It is probably early days to be running her in a group race," the Riccarton trainer said.
"Six months from now she will be a far more developed racehorse, but the race is at our back door so we've got to have a go."
Didham took over the training of Fairlight when Michael Stokes, who had prepared her for her first four starts, gave up training.
"He has kept a percentage in her as he always thought she had ability," Didham said.
The four-year-old daughter of Rip Van Winkle has had six starts this season, notching up three wins and recording two third placings.
Two of her wins have come in New Zealand Bloodstock Insurance Pearl Series bonus races, something Didham said was targeted from the outset.
Fairlight's first start from the Didham stable came at the New Zealand Cup meeting in November and expectations were high.
"Even though she drew 18 of 18 we expected her to run well," Didham said.
"Mark du Plessis rode her and they finished sixth. He got off and said she was a nice horse and would probably win a few races - she won her next two."
Leading into today's black type assignment on her home track, Didham said he couldn't be happier with Fairlight.
"Her races have been well spaced and she has done everything right," he said.
"She is thriving and we are definitely hoping for a good run."
- NZ Racing Desk