JUNGLE FISH goes back-to-back

Feb 14, 2019

This time last year things were looking good for the promising filly Jungle Fish. She had just missed in close finishes at her first two starts before finishing close up in Listed and Gr.3 races at Moonee Valley and Randwick. Black type glory in Adelaide loomed with the Australasian Oaks looking the perfect race for her.

But the three-year-old Jungle Fish was not mature of mind, Michael Kent describing her as "tricky."

So tricky that her behavior at the barriers for the Australasian Oaks saw her withdrawn at the last minute, the stable since that time putting plenty of work into her and giving her plenty of time to mature.

And her form this time in has been the reward, Jungle Fish bolting in with a Pakenham maiden first up and at Sandown on Wednesday charging home to claim victory in the Blue Star Print Handicap.

Appreciating the step up to 1800m, Jungle Fish was patiently steered by Dwayne Dunn who was content to have her in a good rhythm despite covering a bit of ground from a wide gate.

"We were happy to have her three deep and travelling," Kent said, though he admitted to being a bit concerned when the race was not quite run to suit - "I thought they may have gone harder than that."

But it is testament to Jungle Fish's new found professionalism that she was able to finish off in such strong fashion having won her maiden much closer to the pace.

"She is the sort of horse you can ride from anywhere," Kent said, adding that he had not done a lot with her in between runs, noting that she is "a natural staying mare."

A home-bred for Gilgai Farm's Rick Jamieson, Jungle Fish is a daughter of Fastnet Rock's dual Group winner Smart Missile and the lightly raced Giant's Causeway mare Divisible.

Jungle Fish's sire and dam hail from the same family, both being descendants of the influential matriarch Rough Shod II. This is the prolific family of Sadler's Wells, Thatching, Fairy King and Nureyev with Jungle Fish hailing from the same branch as the big race winners Corinthian and Jade Robbery.