Millwood Nike (NZ) Overcomes Adversity in 5th Group One Triumph
22 May 2023
Millwood Nike’s (NZ) (Captaintreacherous) champion qualities helped her pull through a tumultuous week to brilliantly win the $119,000 Group One Magness Benrow Sires Stakes Three-Year-Old Fillies Championship (2200m).
A hoof issue in the days leading up to start 14 and win number 14 threatened to stop the equine superstar from starting at Alexandra Park on Friday night.
But some emergency shoeing from farrier Kerry Estreich helped Millwood Nike show off her incredible speed and stamina in her fifth Group One victory for trainers Mark and Nathan Purdon.
“You have to thank her farrier Kerry, he got a nice shoe on her and she was 100% tonight,” Mark Purdon said.
“She is just all class.”
Millwood Nike was purchased for $75,000 from Millwood Farm’s draft at the 2021 National Yearling Sale in Christchurch by the All Stars Racing Stables.
Despite drawing an inside barrier, Purdon didn’t rush the filly early in Friday night’s 2200m feature.
After settling 4th, the champion trainer-driver moved his star pacer up to sit outside the leader.
And despite working harder than her rivals, Millwood Nike again stamped her class at the elite level.
“She relaxed out there and took nothing out of herself, she just moved when I asked her to and she was just beautiful,” Purdon said.
“I thought the front might have been there for me, but I could see the leader was over racing a touch.”
“My filly was quite happy to sit outside her, she came back to me nicely and took nothing out of herself.”
After Millwood Nike made it a perfect 14-from-14, Purdon said that he would’ve had no hesitations in lining the star filly up against New Zealand’s best three-year-old colts and gelding in the recent Group One Northern Derby (2700m), had the feature not been held the same night as the Group One Northern Oaks (2700m),
“She is right up there with them, if the Derby had of been a week later, we would have been keen to line her up in that, but the Oaks was on the same night.”
Millwood Nike led home a first four made up of NZB Standardbred graduates in her Sires Stakes Three-Year-Old Fillies Championship victory.
Fortify (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight) charged home to take second to seal a quinella for the All Stars stable.
Black Pearl (NZ) (Bettor’s Delight) also ran on well late to take third for trainers Cran and Chrissie Dalgety.
(NZ) (Art Major) made good late ground to take fourth placing for the Stephen Boyd stable.