Winx closing sectionals in Turnbull Stakes ‘as good as it gets’

Chris Waller took one look at Winx’s extraordinary closing sectionals in the Turnbull Stakes and declared: “That’s as good as it gets.”

Three hours after Winx had made it 28 in a row after some heart-stopping moments at Flemington on Saturday, Racenet approached Waller after the dust had settled to have a look at her sectionals.

They revealed the wonder mare had run the first 800m in 50.82 seconds yet stormed home over the last 800m in 43.98 seconds.

Analysts said that was a difference of about 40-41 lengths.

Furthermore, she ran her last 600m in 32.21 seconds the last 200m she scorched in 10.87 seconds.

All of which explained why her performance to fly home from second last on the rails and win by a length was even better than it might have looked while watching the race live.

“Well, that is as good as it gets,” Waller said, on being shown the sectionals.

“Those sectionals show that is not a pressure race, hence the reason she has done a great job to come from well back and win.

“They (the sectionals) tell the story as to why she didn’t win by six lengths or something.

“That’s why she has won all those races in a row, because she is simply unbelievable.

“That’s why horses don’t win so many in a row, because you need everything to go your way.”

Waller says he will now give Winx time to “chill-out” before racing’s wonder woman sets her sights on a fourth consecutive Cox Plate on October 27.

She started that ”chill-out” process with a recovery session at Melbourne’s Altona Beach on Sunday morning as she enjoyed the cool water along with stablemates Youngstar (second in Turnbull) and Invincibella (won the Blazer Stakes).

Waller believes Winx is in the same exceptional league of horses as three-time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva and super sprinter Black Caviar – horses which have conquered almost every obstacle no matter what is thrown at them in their races.

He says the slowly-run first half of the Turnbull Stakes again showed that Winx is able to make her own luck.

“She showed that she doesn’t need everything to go her way,” Waller said. “Black Caviar didn’t, Makybe Diva didn’t in Melbourne Cups.

“These great horses they are just exceptional. It is a different league.”

Winx is a best-priced $1.25 with Sportsbet to win the Cox Plate, in what will almost certainly be the last time she races in Melbourne.

Beyond that there are the possibilities of immediate retirement or, more likely, a swansong in the Sydney autumn. –