Fairytale filly She Will Reign scored a memorable Golden Slipper victory this afternoon, sending her large group of owners into hysterical scenes in the Rosehill mounting yard.
From Middlebrook Station’s Jilly Henderson – who raised the filly – to trainer Gary Portelli and the filly’s wild group of owners, there was utter jubilation and plenty of tears as the $20,000 Inglis Classic buy careered away with a stunning Group 1 victory.
In a perfect Ben Melham ride, She Will Reign found the fence from barrier 11 after 200m, snuck along the inside fence until the top of the straight before exploding to the lead and never looking like getting run down.
It was an amazing result for her owners, headed by syndicator Scott Darby and his Darby Racing team who bought the filly from the Ambergate Farm draft at last year’s Classic Sale.
“We’ve won the Golden Slipper! We’ve won the Golden Slipper!’’ an emotional Darby said moments after the race.
“This is it. This is everything. This means so much to so many people. I don’t know where to start. It’s just amazing, it really is.
“We did it!’’
To view some emotional videos of She Will Reign's connections celebrating the win, visit our Facebook page facebook.com.au/InglisBloodstock
She Will Reign (Manhattan Rain x Courgette) has now won over $2.5million in prizemoney from just five starts, which has netted her four wins and a second placing.
The win gave stallion Manhattan Rain his first Australian Group 1 win.
His only other top-level success came earlier this year with Whisky Baron in South Africa.
For Henderson, the result was “a win for the little people’’.
“It’s amazing, especially for a small farm,’’ Henderson said.
“We’re competing against the big studs all the time.
“Also being female in the industry, I find it quite intimidating but we believe in what we do and to get a result like this, wow.’’
Henderson recalls She Will Reign as a “standout filly’’ in her early days on the farm.
“She was a cracking foal in the paddock, very correct, strong, a lovely filly,’’ she said.
“All of the progeny are very feisty early and I think that’s the making of them, they’re really tough horses.’’
She Will Reign beat fellow Inglis graduate Frolic in the Slipper.
She Will Reign’s Shamus Award half-sister (Lot 86) will be offered by Yarraman Park at next month’s Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale (April 4-6).