Spring Racing Carnival banner mare Atlantic Jewel today completed her fairytale return with an arrogant win in the $350,000 New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes at Caulfield. The 1400-metre Group 1 was her first start since winning the All Aged Stakes in April last year, since sidelined with an injury sustained on the eve of last year’s Spring Racing Carnival, and she showed she had not lost of the brilliance that had carried her to victory at her previous seven starts, reports Racing Victoria.

It was a huge relief for trainer Mark Kavanagh, who struggled to talk after the race but described the race as “poetry”.

Jockey Michael Rodd found words easier to come by and he couldn’t hide his excitement at seeing her back.

“I, ‘Kav’ and the stable, we know how good she is. The only thing today that was going to beat her was bad luck or a bad ride,” Rodd said.

“It’s a massive effort from Kav and his training team there at Flemington to bring her back from a serious injury, a tendon and not knowing how long she was going to need to have off.

“How many horses win first up over 1400 (metres) after 16 months off? Not many and she could probably go around and do it all again because she’s such an athlete.

“There’s a lot of fun ahead now in the Spring Carnival.”

Atlantic Jewel dominated the Memsie like she has most of the other races she has contested, despite the presence of eight other Group 1 winners and some race-fit winter sprinters in the first running of the race at Group 1 level.

After jumping well, Rodd found himself posted three-wide until the 400m but found a spot one off the fence only to pop out not long after when the runs started to come from the rear.

The daughter of Fastnet Rock, who started the $2.20 favourite, ambled alongside the leaders turning for home and exploded away early in the straight.

The five-year-old was eased down by Rodd late but still had 2-1/4 lengths to spare over runner-up Ferlax ($21). Super Cool ($17), Atlantic Jewel’s stablemate, flashed home to finish just a short-half-head back third.

Atlantic Jewel’s next assignment is likely to be the Group 2 Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m), run at Moonee Valley, scene of the $3 million Sportingbet Cox Plate – for which she is now the $3 favourite – and Kavanagh had an ominous warning for her rivals.

“She’s got so much improvement in her it’s frightening,” he said.

While Atlantic Jewel took a stranglehold on Cox Plate favouritism with her win, there were plenty of promising runs outside the placegetters by horses targeting the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups.

It’s A Dundeel (fourth), Fiorente (sixth) and Silent Achiever (11th) all had impeded runs in the straight but hit the line well, while reigning Melbourne Cup winner Green Moon replicated his Memsie performance of last year when fifth.

The full result of the New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes is available here