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Weight, wide barrier won’t bother Misty

When Shaun McGruddy rode Misty Metal to a class-one victory at Bunbury last year, he envisaged her winning a couple of city races.

Ten months later and with another seven wins to her name, McGruddy’s opinion of Misty Metal has changed.


“The times she’s running over 1000 and 1200 are what Group horses run,” McGruddy said.

The experienced hoop is confident he can boost his outstanding record of six wins from eight rides on Misty Metal when they team up in the Listed Miss Andretti Stakes (1100m) at Ascot today.

He guided the Robert and Todd Harvey-trained mare to feature wins in the Listed Jungle Mist Classic (1200m) in November and Listed Summer Scorcher (1000m) a fortnight ago.

TABtouch rates Misty Metal the $2.35 favourite, despite her rising 2.5kg and jumping from the outside barrier in the field of nine.

“She goes up 2.5kg and that combined with the barrier is a bit of a concern,” McGruddy said.

“But she’s been smashing them and she hasn’t taken a backward step.

“Belter is pretty quick early but she can take a sit.

“As long as it went quick enough we should be right, but if I’ve got to put the foot down to get to the front I will.”

The Miss Andretti will be run at 5.50pm after race times were pushed back to avoid the hottest part of the day, with 39C forecast.

McGruddy, who won the Miss Andretti on Escadaire (2010) and Kaprats (2004), changed his flight to Singapore for a family holiday to later tonight so he could still ride Misty Metal.

The first race today is at 2.43pm and the last 7pm.

The last race, the Schweppes Handicap (1200m), features the eagerly anticipated return of quality mare Mikimoto.

The 2017 Burgess Queen Stakes winner hasn’t raced since running third to Art Series in the Group 3 WA Champion Fillies Stakes (1600m) in November 2017. “She had a hind joint problem which wasn’t discovered until she was spelling,” owner Bob Peters said.

“We treated it and she’s good now.”

A smart trial winner at Lark Hill last week, Mikimoto will be tested from barrier 14 first-up.

“She’s got a bad draw and it might be short for her,” Peters said. “Hopefully her ability gets her through. Hopefully she’ll go through (her grades) and we’ll see where she gets to.”

Gimcrack Stakes winner Agent Pippa has been sold to interstate breeding interests.

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