Strong As Steele

Mar 29, 2014

There is no doubting that Miss Steele has a love of Moonee Valley and she was back in winning form at her favourite track on Saturday.

Settling well back for Brad Rawiller, Miss Steele was suited by a strong tempo and she was travelling nicely as she started to edge closer from the school.

Widest at the turn, the grey really put in over the final stages – wearing down leader and second favourite Just A Bullet to win the Epworth Handicap in determined fashion.

In doing so Miss Steele recorded the third win of her eight start career, one that has seen her race particularly well at Moonee Valley where all of her victories have been recorded.

The win was, said owner/breeder Ralph Zito, a particularly exciting one coming on the back of a drama packed week!

“She was scratched a couple of weeks ago with a foot abscess that had not erupted,” he said.

“She got over that and she galloped strongly on Tuesday morning and all was well.”

“But then she was a bit tender again and it was touch and go as to whether she would run.”

Admitting that he was unable to sleep on Friday night, Ralph was at track work bright and early Saturday to witness Miss Steele’s race morning test.

“She worked really well and was actually quite frisky – Mick said ‘I think she wants to run!’”

And so Miss Steele headed to the Valley and the rest is history!

“It was a terrific win,” Ralph enthused, adding that Rawiller told the owners post-race that he’d had to take off earlier – and wider – than he had hoped.

Ralph has high hopes for Miss Steele’s future – one that may immediately include a trip to the Adelaide or Sydney carnivals.

“She is a very promising filly,” he said, “and she is still developing.”

Bred by Ralph with Peta Zito, Joseph Cichello, Rhonda Cichello, John Button and Diane Button, Miss Steele is the second foal produced by the lightly raced Shu' Shu' Lara who won her second start at Mornington before fracturing a leg next time out.

Fortunately she was able to be saved and she is doing a great job at stud with her first foal Ladretto crowned last season’s Townsville Horse Of The Year having had eight starts in Northern Queensland – winning them all!

Shu' Shu' Lara - who again visited Miss Steele’s sire Statue Of Liberty last spring - is a half-sister to the three times Group winner Steel Phoenix who was Ralph Zito’s first horse.

And she has a couple more coming through including the yearling filly Steel Princess by Savoire Vivre.


Photo courtesy of Grant Courtney.