Like mother, like daughter in Guineas triumph

“She’s a beauty!” was John Messara’s reply to one of many messages of congratulation after Stay With Me’s outstanding victory in Saturday’s $500,000 MRC Thousand Guineas 1600m G1.

It was an especially meaningful success for Messara, fellow owner-breeders Alan Jones & John Leaver, and the Arrowfield Stud team because Stay With Me is a home-bred daughter of Street Cry and champion filly Miss Finland (by Redoute’s Choice), and the 41st Group 1 winner bred by Arrowfield since 1985.

Miss Finland, bred & raced by the same three-way partnership, won the 2006 Thousand Guineas en route to Australia’s Champion 3YO Filly title and was trained by David Hayes, who now prepares Stay With Me with his nephew Tom Dabernig.

The race didn’t start well for Stay With Me who missed the jump, forcing jockey Dwayne Dunn to settle her near the rear of the field and ride for luck. However, that may have worked in the filly’s favour because she switched off while Take Pride set a solid pace up front.

Dunn began to push Stay With Me forward at the 600-metre mark and 300 metres later, just after the turn, the filly was in clear air with room to run. And run she did, hitting the lead 100 metres out to win by 1.75 lengths from Jameka, with Badawiya third. Stay With Me’s winning time was 1:35.89, a half-second faster than Press Statement ran to win the Caulfield Guineas thirty-five minutes later.

Watch Stay With Me’s Thousand Guineas win.

David Hayes said, “Top marks to Dwayne, he obviously had a lot of horse under him, but he rode her perfectly after the start she had.”

Criterion, winner of the Caulfield Stakes, and Stay With Me gave the stable a memorable Group 1 double.

Stay With Me has now won three of her six starts and taken her earnings to almost $420,000. A decision on the filly’s next start has yet to be made, but Hayes indicated that the VRC Oaks, MacKinnon Stakes & Myer Classic are all options under consideration.

Miss Finland, whose five Group 1 victories included the 2006 Golden Slipper, is also the dam of stakes-placed city winner Woodbine (by Hussonet) and a 2YO colt by More Than Ready, purchased for $500,000 by Katsumi Yoshida at the 2015 Inglis Easter Sale.  Arrowfield’s queen has since produced a 2014 filly by Animal Kingdom and she recently foaled a colt by Dundeel. 

Stay With Me is the 18th Group 1 winner for her sire Street Cry, who died just over a year ago, and the fourth Group 1 winner for Redoute’s Choice as a broodmare sire, after Sacred Falls, Zoustar & Pasadena Girl, who finished a game fourth in the Thousand Guineas.

Stay With Me sensational in Listed win

Champion filly Miss Finland was simply exceptional on the racetrack, winning five Group 1 races during a stellar 11-win, $4.6 million career, including the Golden Slippper and the VRC Oaks.

Now she has a daughter in something close to her own mould. 3YO filly Stay With Me (by Street Cry) didn’t just win Saturday’s MVRC Atlantic Jewel S. LR: she put it away with the authority of a filly on her way to stardom.

Stay With Me jumped well enough from gate 13, then settled back and wide with only a couple of runners behind her.  She held her place with cover and made ground mid-race, then quickened up before the turn which she rounded with alacrity, before powering clear to win by 1.5 lengths in 1:11.37.

Her performance was franked by the good efforts of the runner-up, juvenile Group 1 winner Pasadena Girl and Jameka, a further 1.5 lengths away in third place.  Not A Single Doubt’s daughter Don’t Doubt Mamma was an eye-catching fourth.

Watch Stay With Me’s Atlantic Jewel S. LR win.

Co-trainer Tom Dabernig said, “She’s a high-class filly and I thought there was a lot of merit to her win.

“She drew a wide gate today and she had to sit back, she was caught deep, and she showed an excellent turn of foot. She’s got a lot of improvement in her. Her coat is a bit of a patchwork quilt and she’ll improve.”

Dabernig’s uncle and training partner David Hayes also prepared Miss Finland and, like her dam, Stay With Me is owned by the long-standing breeding & racing partnership of Arrowfield, John Leaver & Alan Jones.

Stay With Me is the 90th stakeswinner by Street Cry, and the 36th stakeswinner for Redoute’s Choice as a broodmare sire. Her principal Spring target is the $500,000 MRC Thousand Guineas G1 – won by her mother nine years ago – on 10 October.

Miss Finland (by Redoute’s Choice) retired to stud at Arrowfield in 2008 and adapted beautifully to her new life as a broodmare.

Her first foal to race, Woodbine (by Hussonet), has compiled a respectable record in Sydney from the Gai Waterhouse stable, winning three city races and earning black type in the ATC South Pacific Classic LR at three. He will do his future racing from the Chris Gangemi stable in Perth. 

Stay With Me is the first of Miss Finland’s fillies to race. Woodbine’s sister Miss Helsinki has a yearling filly by Smart Missile and last month delivered a filly by Dundeel, while Stay With Me’s year-older sister Tuusula foaled a colt by All American on 22 August.

Katsumi Yoshida purchased the More Than Ready-Miss Finland colt for $500,000 at the 2015 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale and last year Miss Finland produced a filly to Animal Kingdom that will be retained by her breeders. The champion mare and stakes producer is due to foal to Dundeel later this month.

Stay With Me earns black type on debut

It’s a tough gig being the daughter of a champion filly, but Stay With Me took the first step out of Miss Finland’s shadow when she flew home for second in Saturday’s $120,000 VRC Talindert S. 1100m LR.

The race was won by the Peter Moody-trained filly Pasadena Girl, also having her first start and, like Stay With Me, from a Redoute’s Choice mare.  She is the 34th stakeswinner for Redoute’s Choice as a broodmare sire.

Miss Finland won the 2006 Talindert Stakes before finishing second in Nadeem’s Blue Diamond S. G1 and, two starts later, carrying the Arrowfield silks to a memorable Golden Slipper victory.

Stay With Me (by Street Cry) is raced by her breeders Arrowfield Stud, John Leaver & Alan Jones and trained by David Hayes & Tom Dabernig. Hayes also directed Miss Finland’s 11-win, $4.6 million career.

Miss Finland, also the dam of stakes-placed multiple city winner Woodbine (by Hussonet), has a More Than Ready colt in Arrowfield’s draft for the Inglis Easter Sale, a weanling filly by Animal Kingdom and is in foal to Dundeel.