Melito Wins 2010 T J Smith Stakes

April 12th, 2010

After a brilliant decision by trainer Gerald Ryan, three-year-old Melito took out the $500,000 Group 1 T J Smith Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on Saturday.

Originally aimed at the $150,000 Group 2 Lady Sonia McMahon Memorial Stakes (Sapphire Stakes) at the same meeting, Ryan opted to run his talented filly up against an open field of sprinters in the Group 1 T J Smith after only six other horses were paid-up for.

It proved the right move as Melito ($10), ridden by Blake Shinn, produced a powerful late burst leaving behind Hot Danish ($3.90) three-quarters of a length away in second with the $3.30 favourite Mic Mac just a short-head further back for third.

Following the top three, the Peter Moody-trained Newmarket Handicap winner Wanted ($3.90) snared fourth followed by Patronyme ($12), Metal Bender ($19) and Lord Tavistock ($21).

After settling worse than mid-field, Shinn and Melito surged to the lead inside the last 200m to claim victory and stop Hot Danish from winning their first Group 1 success in eight unsuccessful attempts.

A daughter of Redoute’s Choice, Melito maintained her impressive second-up record with her win in the 2010 T J Smith and atoned for her third place to Patronyme in the Group 3 Birthday Card Stakes last start.

Melito became the seventh T J Smith winner to go out at double-figure odds in the races’ 14 year history, giving trainer Ryan his first Group 1 success since he won the Oakleigh Plate with Snitzel in 2006.

The $300,000 Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) on April 24 is next on the agenda as Melito will attempt double Group 1 glory at the Sydney before heading to Queensland for the Brisbane winter carnival.

T J Smith second and third placegetters Hot Danish and Mic Mac will try to turn the tables as they face off against Melito again in the All Aged Stakes.

It was a cracker day of racing at Randwick on Saturday, with emerging stayer Shoot Out winning the $1.3 million Group 1 AJC Australian Derby (2400m), which was the feature event at the meeting.

2010 Darley T J Smith Stakes Results:

Position

Horse

Trainer

Rider

1
MELITO
Gerald Ryan Blake Shinn
2
HOT DANISH
Les Bridge Tim Clark
3
MIC MAC
Greg Eurell Hugh Bowman
4
WANTED
Peter G Moody Luke Nolen
5
PATRONYME
Joseph Pride Nash Rawiller
6
METAL BENDER (NZ)
Chris Waller Damien Oliver
7
LORD TAVISTOCK (NZ)
Andrew R Campbell Jason Waddell