Lim's Magic a Group winner

Trainer Stephen Gray boldly labels second-up winner as a future classic winner

Trainer Stephen Gray does not usually get too carried away with his horses, but he made an exception for impressive second-up winner Lim's Magic yesterday.

Backed down to $16 favouritism, the four-year-old simply blew away his Initiation rivals in the $65,000 Stepitup Stakes over 1,400m, even if he had to squeeze his way between runners at the 300m mark.

Jockey Glen Boss, who just returned from a flying visit to Sydney, where he finished a narrow second to Happy Clapper in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap over 1,600m on Saturday, had to tap into all of his experience to wedge his way between Peace Wanted (Manoel Nunes) and Sabik (Michael Rodd).

But, once they were through into the clear, it soon became a one-horse race as Lim's Magic sprinted away to score by two-and-a-quarter lengths from Ace Harbour (apprentice Krisna Thangamani).

The winning time was 1min 24.29sec on the Short Course B.

"I don't really get excited too much about my horses, but I think this one is a Group winner," said Gray.

"I don't really care which distance, as long as he wins a Group race, but I think he'll become a nice miler. He is a slow-maturing horse and we gave him plenty of time.

"He was unlucky at his first run. It's one of these things when they got away from him but he made good ground in the end (third to Nimitz).

"He was again drawn badly today, but Glen gave him a brilliant ride. It's good to have Glen on such horses as he's got the experience to make big call on good horses."

Boss jumped off with only one sentence that summed it all so well.

"Remember his name," said the three-time Melbourne Cup-winning jockey.