Argentia, ridden by Mark Zahra, wins at Flemington (Image: Racing Photos)
Argentia took impeccable breeding into her debut at Flemington on Saturday and she emerged as one of the season’s most exciting young fillies after a breathtaking performance.
By the unbeaten star Frankel out of multiple Group 1 winner Princess Coup, Argentia’s debut was overshadowed by that of the daughter another unbeaten star Black Caviar, but Argentia soon stole the show from Invincible Caviar when charging clear late.
It may have only been a two-year-old race at back end of the season, by few would argue there are not at least a handful of future group-race performers as Argentia ($6.50) beat Viviane ($12) by a widening length and three quarters after switching off heels inside the 400-metre mark and finishing over the top of the other pair.
Invincible Caviar ($5.50) held on for third a length and a half further away,
Jockey Mark Zahra was impressed with what Argentia was able to do ahead of a three-year-old career where the Group 1 Thousand Guineas will be her main aim.
"She had been trialing on wet tracks, so we were struggling to get a feel of her," he explained.
"We’ve always had a bit of an opinion but she appears a horse to be taking a bit of time but on dry ground now and with raceday speed, she showed her true colours.
"We weren’t really sure what to expect today but I lobbed right in the A-spot and we travelled a long way and it took a while to get on the right leg but once we did, she was off and gone."
Invincible Caviar did not quite debut in the same style as her unbeaten mother Black Caviar 12 years ago, but her effort for third was surely a promising start after leading up the field and rallying when tested inside the final 200 metres.
Trainer Peter Moody was pleased with what her saw and rated the race as one of the best juvenile races on Melbourne since February.
"She looked a lot like mum when she was rolling along, didn’t she," he noted.
"Good effort. Disappointing not to win, of course, but reports on the winner pre-race were very good and we knew that.
"I know the Freedman camp had a big rap on Argentia so there’s no disgrace.
"This is one of the best two-year-old races we’ve had here since the Blue Diamond and I think it’s going to be a good race. No disgrace to run third to a very, very good filly."
Argentia cost $670.000 as a yearling and is raced by John Camilleri’s Fairway Thoroughbreds. Camillieri, of course, was the breeder of the remarkable four-time Cox Plate winner Winx.