What You Need extended his unbeaten sequence to three with another impressive display down the Flemington straight in claiming Saturday’s Listed Sunlight Classic (1100m).
The three-year-old sprint, formerly known as the Moomba Plate and held two weeks earlier, had received a significant prizemoney boost from $160,000 to $500,000 and was rewarded with the clash of rapidly improving three-year-olds What You Need and Benedetta.
Benedetta (barrier one) and What You Need (barrier 17) were drawn opposite sides of the track and both raced prominent throughout without cover.
Daniel Stackhouse aboard Benedetta, this month’s three-length winner of the $750,000 Inglis Sprint (1200m), was first to make his bid for victory but was reeled in by What You Need inside the final 150 metres.
Ridden by Ben Melham for trainers Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr, What You Need ($2.25 favourite) defeated Renosu ($23) by a length with Benedetta ($3.10) a further half neck away in third.
“He’s had his issues getting here, the Price team have done a good job, and he had that race in his keeping a long way out,” Melham said.
“I was just mindful of the steps ahead in his preparation and he won that race pretty well, but I never pulled the whip on him and he should pull up clean and improve off the back of that.”
Kent Jnr told said post-race What You Need would be prepared for the $1 million G2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m) at Randwick on April 8 followed by the $500,000 G1 Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville on May 20.
“He’s lightly raced but he’s a topline colt, I’ve got no doubt about that. He’ll bounce out of this run and I just expect him to keep improving off the back of this,” Melham said.
What You Need is by Supido out of Commands mare Intuit, a two-time winner from 1100 to 1200 metres, making him a half-brother to G3 Proud Miss Stakes winner Runway Star.