It has taken until her 10th start but three-year-old filly Namimo has broken her maiden at Sandown as the short-priced favourite.
Trained by David and Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig, Namimo had figured in the minor placings in four of her first nine starts, including at The Valley in the first start of her current campaign last month.
The filly struck a winnable maiden in Wednesday’s Ladbrokes Plate (1200m) and after sitting outside the lead under in-form jockey Jye McNeil the $2.05 favourite was able to get the job done by 1-1/4 lengths over debutant Rebel Racer.
“She’s always shown ability,” stable representative Gary Fennessy said.
“She’s had nine starts and you get a bit frustrated not winning, but she’s always done a lot wrong in her races.”
Fennessy said the three-year-old was now starting to learn more with experience and maturity expects she can win more races.
“She’ll go to a benchmark-64 now and be hard to beat again,” he said.
McNeil believes Namimo still has work to do in respect to her race craft, saying she was still pretty green once she hit the front in Wednesday’s race.
“The penny hasn’t fully dropped I don’t think but she’s probably at the stage where she’s going to improve with racing,” he said.
McNeil was later suspended for nine meetings for careless riding near the 100m mark, with his penalty to begin after he rides at Flemington on Saturday.