Sunlight has acclimatised to Queensland with two Gold Coast wins ahead of the MM Classic.
Trainer Tony McEvoy’s decision to take a different tack with Sunlight is paying dividends.
A few months ago, McEvoy took a look at the record books and decided he needed to try something different if she was to win the Magic Millions.
Five months later most of the plan has worked with the filly winning her two starts in Queensland to be in the top three in Magic Millions Classic markets after being as much as $41 a month ago.
Melbourne-Adelaide based McEvoy believes history shows it is vital for a horse to have had at least one start in Queensland before winning the Classic.
The records bear out his assessment as in the 10 years since Augusta Proud won in 2008 only Capitalist and Karuta Queen have won the race without a start in Queensland.
Trained by Leon Macdonald in Adelaide, Augusta Proud is the last horse not trained in Queensland or NSW to win the race.
“The Millions is a very hard race to win from down south. I wanted to bring her here early so she could acclimatise,” McEvoy said.
“I wanted her to feel like a local on Millions day.”
Sunlight has won both her Queensland starts at the Gold Coast by bounding to a lead and sprinting away in the straight.
On Saturday she dominated a handy field over 1100m and McEvoy has no doubts she will run a strong 1200m in the Millions.
“She absorbed some pressure but it will be different in the Millions,” McEvoy said.
He was a big spender at last year’s Magic Millions sales and has been rewarded with two Classic runners, Sunlight and Crockett.
“I will be back at the sales again this year and let us hope we can find something,” McEvoy said.
The barrier draw for the Magic Millions Classic is on Tuesday morning.