Trainer Robert Smerdon will aim Thurlow towards next year’s $1 million Sportingbet Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) after the two-year-old scored a last-stride win in Saturday’s$120,000 Santa’s Magical Kingdom Stakes (1000m) at Sportingbet Park Sandown, reports Racing Victoria.

Coming off a second placing behind Antelucan on Melbourne Cup Day, Thurlow got punters off to a flying start after she was backed from $2 to start at $1.75.

Describing the narrow win as ‘painful to watch’, Smerdon said the daughter of Sebring would now head to the paddock for a break before potentially resuming in the Listed Blue Diamond Preview (1000m) in January.

“She got back in the ruck and I thought she’d be outside the leader but it was encouraging the way she’s hit the line,” Smerdon said.

“She’s always shown us talent and we always hoped that she’d progress next preparation and she may be better over further.

“She’s come a long way and she’s handled it really well so you’d like to think in the autumn after a break she might be a Blue Diamond type of filly.”

Settling in a midfield position for jockey Craig Williams, Thurlow ($1.75F) overcame a bump at the top of the straight to win by a nose over Miss Gidget ($26), with Mesa ($6) a further short-head away in third.

Predicting the filly to take plenty of benefit from the experience, Williams said it was a good effort to win from an awkward position in the run.

“She’s already a Stakes filly today but she’s definitely got really big upside and I can’t wait until she grows and comes back in the autumn,” Williams said.

“She’s got a fantastic attitude and a really good motor.” (