Missile hits Caulfield target

Missile Mantra is likely to venture interstate searching to add further black type to her record after winning first-up at Caulfield on Saturday.

The four-year-old daughter of Smart Missile swooped from last of five runners to claim the $125,000 Neds Filter Form Handicap (1200m), an open handicap.

Trained by Peter and Paul Snowden and ridden to victory by Mark Zahra, Missile Mantra ($4.20) defeated Fabric ($6) by 1.75 lengths, with Simply Optimistic ($4.40) a further length away in third.

“I was pretty confident today and I was happy to leave her be early and think she’d be too good late,” Zahra said.

“It doesn’t always play out that way but coming to the bend (I was) looking like I had them covered and I was getting there a bit soon but I didn’t want to stop the momentum and she won with something in hand.”

Dollar For Dollar ($2.70 favourite) enjoyed an uncontested lead but was the first horse beaten at the 300-metre mark, weakening to finish last with apprentice Will Price at a loss to explain the disappointing performance.

Missile Mantra was a two-year-old Stakes winner over 1200 metres at Caulfield, claiming the Listed Redoute’s Choice Stakes in May 2019, and she doubled her tally at her final start last campaign, winning the Group 3 Summoned Stakes (1500m) at Sandown Hillside on November 14.

Snowden Racing’s stable representative Andrew Angelone said Missile Mantra’s resumption was delayed by a leg infection, but she will now be likely to travel interstate with other Stakes races in mind.

“She’s come back in great order… hopefully we can keep winning,” Angelone said.

Missile Mantra has raced 17 times for four wins and two minor placings, with prizemoney now beyond the $500,000 mark.

By Carl Di Iorio of Racing.com