First winner by Stryker

Long-shot winner Sonesta moved Victorian freshman Stryker off the mark in WA on Wednesday.

Trevor Andrews trains Sonesta for owner-breeder Emile Panossian and she caused a $23 upset just four days after a midfield finish behind Senso at Ascot.  In contrast to her previous two outings, Sonesta took up the running in the Westspeed Plate (1100m) and never relinquished the lead.

“I don’t normally back them up that quickly but she’s a gross, relaxed filly and didn’t take any harm from Saturday,” Andrews said.  “It wasn’t a bad run behind Senso – she wants to roll along like today and isn’t a sit-and-sprint horse.

“I told Emile she had pleased since the weekend and wouldn’t disappoint.  She’s qualified for the Magic Millions Classic now and that’s where she’s headed.”

Sonesta (2f Stryker – Siranoush by Good Journey) is a younger half-sister to Bagrat Bullet (Musket).  He’s with Wendy Kelly and was fourth on debut at Mornington in November.

Panossian, who operates Sun Block Blinds in Perth’s northern suburbs at Malaga, has a Stryker – Siranoush colt foaled in October.  The mare was bred back to Von Costa De Hero.

Stryker (Fastnet Rock) was a Group 3 winner of the BTC Classic at Doomben and he also added a Listed victory in the Heritage Stakes at Rosehill before retiring to Three Bridges Thoroughbreds.

His second-crop yearlings were popular on the Gold Coast last month – a $165,000 colt from Live in Black was snapped up by Tony McEvoy and a $100,000 filly out of Recurring was purchased by Aston Bloodstock.

Stryker has 10 yearlings catalogued for the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale starting on March 1.