Sanctify came from the rear of the field on Wednesday to claim the Sports Bar Central Brewhouse 1400 at Oamaru.
It was the first career win for the promising three-year-old daughter of Reliable Man who was having the sixth start of her career.
Sanctify was last away from the gates though jockey Chris Johnson kept his cool, bided his time and when the gap opened up in the straight and they shot past their rivals to win by 1.8L.
“I was hoping to be midfield in the run but she got out the back and settled so I just had to go from there,” Johnson said. “She showed a good turn of foot from the 200m and won nicely in the end.
“She was back and flat a little but she started making ground about half-way down and then she really took off at the 100m.”
Trainer Andrew Carston admitted he did have some doubts during the running of the race but his concerns were put to rest in the end.
“We were a bit worried but having Chris Johnson on, it’s a massive advantage,” Carston said.
“The conditions were probably my biggest concern but it was a Slow7 bordering 8 at her last start at Ashburton so we thought we would roll the dice and it’s a good result.
“I will probably look for a race during the Cup meeting and there are some stakes races after Christmas.
“It is good to get a result for Go Racing, they are big supporters. She is a filly that has always shown a lot and now she’s starting to deliver.”
Sanctify was purchased by Go Racing out of Westbury Stud’s 2018 New Zealand Bloodstock Book 1 draft for $45,000 and races for their Go Racing Orchestral Syndicate.
Carston is looking ahead to Saturday’s meeting at Riccarton where he has 12 horses nominated including Gr.3 War Decree Stakes (1600m) hopeful Sorceress.
The three-year-old daughter of Showcasing was runner-up last start in the Guineas Trial (1400m) at Riccarton earlier this month to Karalino who has since gone on to finish second in the Gr.3 Barneswood Farm Stakes (1400m).
“It is a step up from her last race but she is a filly that has done nothing wrong,” Carston said.
“It will give us a line as to whether we run in the 1000 Guineas (Gr.1 gavelhouse.com New Zealand 1000 Guineas, 1600m) or step back. We are more than happy with her going into the race.
Last start winner Ticket To Ride will also be looking for success on her hometrack on Saturday.
The seven-year-old mare will line up in the Coupland’s Bakeries Mile Trial (1400m) after winning at Ashburton last weekend.
“She has come through that run well so she will back up again,” Carston said.
“She has done really well and you can’t knock her form. It is another step up and in a strong field but going forward this is probably the kind of horses she is going to have to line up against anyway.
“It will give us a line on what races we target at the Cup meeting.”
Meanwhile Group One goals have been put on hold for stable star Miss Federer.
The winner of the Listed Canterbury Belle Stakes (1200m) two starts back, she was unplaced at her last run in the Gr.3 Barneswood Farm Stakes (1400m).
“She is still in work and has pulled up really good from Saturday but we have pulled her out of the 1000 Guineas.” Carston said.
“At this stage she will have one run at the New Zealand Cup meeting in the three-year-old 1400m on the middle day and that will give me a line on what we set her for next preparation.”