Chris Waller has sounded an ominous warning to his local and international rivals — wonder mare Winx still has some improvement left in her quest for a fourth-successive Cox Plate victory at The Valley on October 27.
Winx returned to the track at Flemington for the first time since her nail-biting but extraordinary Turnbull Stakes win last Saturday.
But Waller said this week will only be a light one for his seven-year-old superstar before she clicks into gear in the rundown to the Cox Plate.
“I think she will take improvement from the run,” Waller said. “It was the perfect type of gallop – she went back, she settled, she finished off strongly.
“It will tidy her up for three weeks’ time.
“We had three runners on the day and all the riders said they felt the ground was perfect, so that was a big plus for the horses.
“That will naturally bring her on.”
Admitting last week’s run was a relief as much as anything else, he said Winx had come through the run well, and some light beach time had been the best thing for the most talked-about horse in the country.
“We’ve got an aqua walker in our stable back in Sydney … they go on there for a couple of days. We are just simulating that,” he said.
“This week is easy for her. (Tuesday) morning was her first day back on the track.
“We will do a little bit more next week and in the last week, we will just keep her nice and sharp.”
He said it remained a privilege to train the champion mare, who has won 28 races in succession — and 32 overall — and who is on the cusp of breaking through the $20 million prize-money bracket.
“She is a delight to train and to watch,” he said. – Herald Sun