The remarkable rise of the Phoenix Ladies Syndicate continued on Saturday as the all-female group celebrated a first Australian success thanks to a high-profile victory from Euphoric Summer.
The Not A Single Doubt filly showed great determination, not to mention talent, to land the Magic Millions Two-Year-Old Clockwise Classic at Ballarat. It’s a victory that secures her a spot in the Magic Millions Classic itself at the Gold Coast in January where an A$500,000 bonus awaits the first horse past the post owned by a ladies only syndicate.
Promising on debut, when finding just one too good, the Mick Price and Michael Kent Junior trained filly broke on terms with the field as they set off in the annual clockwise event at Ballarat. Moved into second by jockey Ben Melham the pair tracked the pace until the field entered the home straight. Still seemly travelling nicely she picked up well to get to the long-time leader and once past that one she showed great battling qualities to hold off a sustained late challenge form the Aquis-owned Rathlin.
“She showed a lot of guts and determination,” said a delighted Michael Kent Jnr. “Ben rode her perfect and hats off the to filly she was super tough, Rathlin was breathing down her neck and bumping into her and she just kept sticking her nose out.
“She’s a lovely two-year-old type, her mum was a Group One winner so I think Phoenix Ladies bought this filly very well. She’s a natural and all roads lead to January 11 (Magic Millions Classic).
“She has talent, but more importantly, she has the right brain, nothing gets in her way. She walked around here and cantered to the start nicely. She’s got good tactical speed and now we have the luxury of taking our time. We’re in the Magic Millions we can give her a little break and probably get up their three weeks before the race, acclimatise to the weather and maybe give her one run into the Magic Millions.”
The landmark success for Phoenix Ladies comes just over a year after the ownership group first came to prominence with a series of victories in Dubai. They struck with their first two runners, Walking Thunder and Superior in back to back meetings at Meydan with the former going on to win twice more. Golden Jaguar added to the tally of wins with victories at Jebel Ali and Meydan before all three ended up taking their chances in the UAE Derby on Dubai World Cup night. Although Euphoric Summer is their first winner outside of the UAE ‘PLS’ enjoyed more noteworthy success with Goffs London Sale buy Forever In Dreams. The Aidan Fogarty trained filly placing twice at Group One level, finishing second in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot and third in the Champions Sprint on Champions Day.
“As you can imagine the Ladies are thrilled by this result,” said Phoenix Ladies Principal Pamela Cordina. “We have been so lucky to enjoy the success we’ve had and to have our first winner in Australia so soon after having our first runners in the country is amazing. I must give a huge thank you to Mick Price and Michael Kent Junior for their work with this filly, they have done a great job with her and this success is a great testament to their training operation. Michael especially deserves a lot of credit as he’s been a major help in buying our horses in Australia. The ladies and I can’t wait for January and the Magic Millions!”
Euphoric Summer was an A$260,000 purchase from the Magic Millions Sale in January and is out of Group One-winning mare Mid Summer Music.