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Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators

Talented New Zealand-bred mare Wainui Creek is emerging as a strong candidate for the rich feature event for mares in the summer — and leading trainers Greg and Skye Bond are hoping that she will be able to improve on her unlucky fifth in last summer’s Westral Mares Classic by winning the group 1 feature event this year.

Five-year-old Wainui Creek has resumed after a spell in fine form, and she was not extended in scoring an all-the-way victory in the Nova 93.7 Pace (4) at Gloucester Park on Saturday night.

This took her record in four starts after a five-month absence to three wins and a third placing for a career record of 42 starts for 13 wins, 14 placings and stakes of $293,557.

She had an extremely tough run in the Westral Mares Classic last summer when she started from the outside barrier (No. 9) and raced in the breeze early and then out wide without cover before finishing fifth behind Balcatherine.

She has demonstrated her class by winning the group 2 Daintys Daughter Classic last November and the group 2 Empress Stakes in March this year.

Ryan Warwick had an armchair drive behind Wainui Creek, the $1.60 favourite in Saturday night’s 2130m event. Wainui Creek started from the No. 2 barrier, dashed straight to the front and was able to saunter through the lead time in 38.5sec. and the opening 400m sections in 31.5sec. and 31sec. before increasing the tempo with final quarters of 28.7sec. and 27.9sec.

She won at a 1.59 rate by more than a length from Star Of Diamonds ($4.60), with My Sweet Deal ($9.50) third after trailing the leader throughout.