HEADING to Mornington on Sunday, Kyneton's Sue Naylor had a good feeling about Paris Gem.
The astute trainer's hunch proved to be right on the money, as the seven-year-old mare executed an exhilarating from last to first win over 1200m.
It was the daughter of Von Costa de Hero and Jeweller's Gem's fourth career win in 50 starts and arguably her best, coming on the back of a 17-week spell.
"She did a great job - I think she's getting better with age," Naylor said.
"She's seven, but she's so sound and seems to be getting that bit stronger.
"I ride her in all of her work and I must say she looks bigger and stronger and she was feeling it in her work as well.
"I went there thinking she would go pretty well. You never go there thinking you are a good thing, but she did a great job."
A versatile galloper, Paris Gem's four wins have been a mix of two apiece on the synthetic and grass tracks.
She has also been a relatively consistent horse, with seven additional placings and generally finishing in the front half of the field in her races for more than $100,000 in prizemoney.
"She's very consistent, especially in the winter on the synthetic, but she has won on the grass before, she doesn't like it wet," Naylor said.
"I guess synthetic racing is bit easier on her, though I don't think there were any champions racing (on Sunday).
"Or number came up, so we're happy about that."
Naylor will have a good look around before determining where Paris Gem will run next, but she admits the four-point jump in the ratings to 59 would make things potentially different.
Paris Gem was ridden by mature-age apprentice Sheridan Clarke, who continued her blistering start to the new year.
The 27-year-old has ridden exactly half of her 10 career winners in the first few days of 2022 and benefited from a stroke of good fortune in picking up the winning ride on Paris Gem.
"I got her by default as I had Celine Gaudray on her and she broke her arm (at Geelong last Thursday) and she was the only other apprentice available," Naylor said.
"But I wasn't complaining.
"She's a very nice girl and quite a strong apprentice and she rode her incredibly well. I'd be more than happy to use her again."
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