The Heathcote-trained three-year-old had an uninterrupted preparation into the fillies and mares race on Saturday, following a very brave fifth a fortnight ago in the Stradbroke Handicap (1400m).
Having been ridden by Jason Collett twice previously in Sydney, the Sydney-based rider said it was a weight off his shoulders to finally win on her, following a few near misses.
“I just missed in Sydney on her,” the winning rider said.
“It was great to get back on her. I've followed her this prep since both of us came back and she'd been running good, honest races but she probably hadn't been finishing them off quite like she did today.”
While Snapdancer (2nd) looked to have the race won from a long way out, Collett said his mount let down with an “unbelievable” turn of foot to come from where she did and win.
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“The feeling I got when I pushed the button, I thought it was pretty good at Randwick when I just missed, but today it was unbelievable,” he continued.
“Her turn of foot is electric.”
Heathcote has enjoyed a somewhat successful Brisbane Winter Carnival, with Prince Of Boom firing on all cylinders earlier in the year, while a rejuvenated Rothfire showed he was back to near his best with a tough third-placed effort in the Stradbroke.
It was a special win for the Eagle Farm trainer, who also trained Startantes' dam Funtantes and her dam Catantes.
“I am so pleased for the ownership group,” Heathcote said.
“We had the Mum – Funtantes, I had her Mum – Cantantes, it has been a part of my life for 23-24 years. This ownership group has been with me the whole way.”
Sent out as an $11 chance with online bookmakers, Heathcote said that he was always confident he had the right filly to win the race.
With a well-deserved spell on the cards for Startantes now, Heathcote said he will have to have a think about what he sets her for in the spring, with Melbourne being a real possibility.
“We've know she was special for a long way through and she went that close in the Surround in Sydney, she had no luck,” he said.
“We made a big call taking Taylor (Marshall) off and putting Jason on but he was last coming into the straight, kept his cool and ran right through them.
“She's probably worth a few bob now, aye?
“She'll go to the paddock for sure. I was going to take her to Melbourne for the spring but I'll need to re-evaluate that now because she hasn't had a break now for literally two preparations – only little bandaid breaks but jeez, there are some nice fillies and mares races at Flemington isn't there?”