Darby Racing have enjoyed phenomenal success this season with a couple of terrific juvenile fillies in Yankee Rose and Scarlet Rain, their colours carried to victory at Moonee Valley on Wednesday by another exciting two year-old filly in Athena Lass.
Prepared by David Hayes and Tom Dabernig, the chestnut daughter of Snitzel was well favoured in a tough race and ran up to expectation when winning the 1000 metre open event by a neck.
She showed natural speed to travel just off the pace and gave plenty in the run home to score an encouraging win.
"That was a really good debut in a deep race,” said Hayes.
"She’s a quality filly. She’s been immature in her shins and joints, but it took Black Caviar a while too!”
Hayes was noncommittal about future plans for Athena Lass, preferring to wait and see how she pulls up, although an upcoming Black Type event in Adelaide may prove an appealing option.
Athena Lass was a $100,000 Inglis Premier purchase from the Flinders Park draft for Lindsay Park Bloodstock and is a half-sister to stakes-winner Euryale.
She is the third winner from three foals to race from Meduesa, a Fusaichi Pegasus (USA) daughter of Group I winner Danglissa.
Formerly a Darley mare, Meduesa was on-sold in 2010 for $41,000 to Bridsan Bloodstock, who bred and sold Athena Lass.
Athena Lass is the 28th Australian two year-old winner this season for Snitzel (he also has one in South Africa to make 29), who is chasing the record of 30 individual two year-old winners in a season set by Without Fear (Fr) back in 1975/1976.
Athena Lass as a yearling at the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale