Outstanding juvenile Melt is back bigger and better if Saturday's winning performance at Ruakaka is anything to go by.
The group one placed youngster treated her rivals with disdain over the closing stages of the 1000m dash for 3-year-olds as she opened a new campaign with a hollow two and a half-length victory.
In the hands of Sam Spratt, who was having her first ride on the filly, Melt showed her customary top-end speed to cruise clear when asked to quicken through a gap in the home straight. The display was just what trainer Nigel Tiley was looking for as he contemplates options available to ready her for a group one assignment at Riccarton in November.
"I wasn't sure just what to expect from her, as she has only had a limited build-up so far," Tiley said. "Her coat is a long way from where it should be and she looked like a little woolly bear before the race which was a little embarrassing. She doesn't take a lot of work though and with her natural speed the 1000m was a perfect way to kick her off."
An unplaced run in a 1000m trial on a heavy surface at Avondale last month worked well for the Iffraaj filly who came on in leaps and bounds following the run, her first real hit-out since finishing second to Avantage in the group one Manawatu Sires' Produce Stakes (1400m) at Awapuni in March.
"She had hardly had a gallop before we took her to the trials last month," Tiley said.
"She just cruised around that day although Leith [Innes] told me she was ready to jump through the bridle if he had asked her for an effort."
Tiley will take a few days to monitor how the filly pulls up before thinking about what comes next.
"I don't really know what the plan is exactly but the main aim is to get her to Christchurch for the 1000 Guineas in November."
- NZ Racing Desk