Claire claims Mornington Classic

NZ bred mare Dame Claire annexed the second stakes victory of her career in the Listed R M Ansett Classic (2413m) at Mornington on Saturday.

Dame Claire (5m Danehill Dancer – Lovely Actress by Kaldoun) had won the Listed Andrew Ramsden Stakes (3200m) at Flemington in May.   Jockey Peter Mertens settled her second behind tearaway leader The Cleaner and then took all the short-cuts to defeat last year’s winner I’m Jake (Pins) and Storm Burst (Danehill Dancer).

“Obviously, she was one of the toughest stayers in the race,” Mertens said.  “We were under a bit of pressure with 58kg from I’m Jake and were lucky to get a rails run.”

Dame Claire (NZ) was bred and sold by Monovale Farm to Mornington trainer Pat Carey at NZB’s 2009 Karaka Premier Sale for $30,000.  She has now won over $270,000 in stakes.

Dame Claire passed the first qualifying clause for the 2012 Melbourne Cup by winning the Andrew Ramsden.  The mare holds nominations for both Cups but Carey indicated a race like the Sandown Cup would be a more suitable target.

Dame Claire is by Coolmore Stud shuttler Danehill Dancer and is one of three winners for French bred mare Lovely Actress.  The dam is an unraced half-sister to G1 English 1000 Guineas winner Cape Verdi (Caerleon).