Milligan horse has Malea Magic-al run in Carlton Cup
RACING: Race 8 favourite Malea Magic has claimed another big win taking the John Carlton Cup to book a spot in the Ramornie Handicap feature on July 10.
The race had a slow start, with Daniel Went's Dantga getting out to an early lead.
The Grafton-trained horse led around the bend but Belinda Hodder rode Malea Magic well round outside and waited patiently before storming home ahead of Evopex in a photo finish.
Dantga finished third and Taillevent fourth.
Trained by Taree man Bob Milligan, the three-year old bay filly has been in good form coming off two firsts in Newcastle and Randwick before a trip to Grafton.
Bob's son Glen Milligan was expecting a strong run going into the race and Malea Magic delivered.
"We were quietly confident, she won first up in the Highway down in Sydney,” Glen Milligan said.
"She does go well, her records speak for themselves really and she's got five or six from 10 now so she's getting better all the time.”
Malea Magic now moves on to the Ramornie Handicap which will provide one of the strongest feature races of the July Carnival.
Milligan said that he felt the horse had more to give but should be able to compete against tough opponents in the Ramornie.
"I expect her to run a bit more,” he said.
"She's got to improve a bit in what will be a stronger field than that but I think she's got it in her and we're heading in the right direction.”
Malea Magic generally liked a shorter race and had had trouble with longer distances but Milligan thought she did well this time out.
"Just the last little bit we thought 1200 metres is plenty for her,” he said.
"She's very determined and she gives it her all so that's really good.”
The Milligan Racing team had just the one horse racing on Westlawn Prelude Day and Glen said it was unlikely it would have others competing throughout the carnival.
"I haven't got many there to go so I probably won't have any more runners but we'll see how we go,” he said.
Bob and Glen will be hoping for another strong come Ramornie Handicap day in just under two weeks time.