Sunlight edged favorite Estijaab in the TAB Silver Slipper Stakes (G2) for 2-year-olds Feb. 24 at Rosehill Gardens, a potential sign of what is to come in next month's rich Longines Golden Slipper (G1).
After the embattled top two, it was another seven lengths back to Gongs in third. Neutrality and Knievel completed the order of finish in the 1,100-meter (about 5 1/2 furlongs) sprint.
Sunlight, a filly by Zoustar, raced third into the turn with Tim Clark aboard, then came three-wide to make her run. Neutrality, who had sprinted to the lead while chased by Estijaab, had enough as they straightened for home. Sunlight drew abreast of Estijaab, and the fillies raced together until the final 50 meters, when Sunlight found just a bit more than her rival.
Sunlight posted her fourth straight win while stepping into group company for the first time for trainer Tony McEvoy.
"I had a lovely run, and it panned out well," Clark said.
McEvoy said he expects further improvement from Sunlight—"That's why I have a smile on my face"—and plans to give her one more run before the Golden Slipper. That would come in the Magic Night Stakes (G3) just seven days before the big race.
Sunlight is owned by a syndicate. She is out of Solar Charged (AUS), by Charged Forward, and was bred by Widden Stud Australia.
She Will Reign last year became the sixth youngster to win the Silver Slipper-Golden Slipper double.