Promising three-year-old Two Illicit continued the winning roll of Trelawney Stud couple, Brent and Cherry Taylor when she produced a professional display to take out the Listed Trevor Eagle Memorial 3YO (1500m) at Ellerslie.
Carrying the familiar red and green Trelawney colours that were sported by recent Gr.1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) winner Loire, Two Illicit was tackling stakes company for the first time off the back of her maiden victory at the same venue last month.
With regular rider Donavan Mansour out of action after suffering a nasty injury in a raceday accident at Te Aroha, Vinnie Colgan took the ride on the Jimmy Choux filly and produced a copybook display as he guided his charge through a narrow gap in the home straight to charge into contention at the 200m mark.
Race favourite Dragon Leap had burst to the front at that stage but began to drift towards the outside of the track which allowed Two Illicit to get in the deciding stride and claim a valuable black type victory.
Co-trainer Robert Wellwood, who prepares the filly in partnership with Roger James, was delighted to see Two Illicit do everything right in the run home after the pair had added blinkers to her gear for the race.
“It was a very good run as we put the blinkers on this time,” Wellwood said.
“She galloped with them on earlier in the week and worked superbly so we put them on and that has probably been the winning of the race.
“She was very green here (Ellerslie) last time and she has learnt from that.”
Wellwood wouldn’t be drawn on the future plans for the filly although he can see an exciting future for her.
“We will have to go back to the drawing board now,” he said.
“She has put her hand up now and we can go forward with a lot of confidence.”
Two Illicit was bred in partnership by Brent and Cherry with Brent's mother Faith Taylor and sister Jane Taylor. Scott Malcom shares in the racing partnership. She is the third foal of Tale Of The Cat mare Gemini and hails from an extended family that features a host of international stakes performers including multiple European Group One winners Midday and Reams Of Verse. - NZ Racing Desk