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Missrock races to narrow first-up win

After a belated start to her autumn preparation, three-year-old Missrock has raced to a narrow first-up win at Flemington.

The Robbie Laing-trained Missrock had been scratched from the Group One Lightning Stakes and Group One Oakleigh Plate the past two Saturdays because of separate setbacks.

The filly instead made her return in Saturday’s Mrs Mac’s Family Bakery Sprint (1100m) and got home by a short half-head over Invincible Heart but then had to survive a protest.

Craig Newitt, rider of the runner-up, fired in a protest alleging interference inside the final 100m had cost him the race after Missrock ($4.60) shifted in and made contact with his mount.

“There’s no doubt there is a bump inside the final 100 metres as a result of Missrock getting in, but we have to determine if it cost you the race and we don’t believe it did,” chief steward Terry Bailey told Newitt when dismissing the protest.

Favourite Sword Of Light ($3.80) was a nose away third.

Laing is now looking to Sydney with Missrock who was a dual stakes winner as a two-year-old including in the Percy Sykes Stakes in Sydney last autumn.

She went winless throughout her spring preparation with her best finishes a third in the Wakeful Stakes and fifth in the VRC Oaks.

“She’s in the Newmarket Handicap but I wouldn’t back her up a week apart, so I think we’ll go to Sydney ASAP,” Laing said.

The Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) next month is among the options for Missrock.

“She’s also in the Doncaster,” Laing said.

“She would want to go a bit better than she did today to win a Doncaster. But that was a pass mark.”

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