The Group 3 Magic Night Stakes is a 1200 metre sprint race for two-year-old fillies run at set weights at Rosehill Gardens Racecourse in Sydney during the month of March.
Prizemoney for the race is $250,000 as of 2023.
Magic Night Stakes Race Details
Race Distance: 1200m
Prize Money: $200,000
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When Is The Magic Night Stakes: 9/3/24
What Time Is The Magic Night Stakes: TBA
Where Is The Magic Night Stakes: Rosehill Racecourse
How To Live Stream The Magic Night Stakes
To live stream the Magic Night Stakes, TAB Account Holders can watch the race live.
More Details About The Magic Night Stakes
A lovely filly with the decidedly unfeminine name of Steel City was the winner in 2023.
She has outstanding lines via her sire Merchant Navy that needed only 10 jumps to pass the $2 million mark in earnings that undoubtedly made his sire, Fastnet Rock, very proud indeed.
Steel City has Street Cry for grand damsire, so it is almost hard to appreciate the bargain Steel City presented when she went for $700,000 at the 2022 Gold Coast Yearling Sale.
The Magic Night Stakes was her first win, as of early April 2023. She is having a spell and living off the $109,000 she collected for crossing first in the Magic Night Stakes, where she jumped favourite and won by just under three lengths.
She jumped from the rail, went straight to the front and was never headed. She was automatically qualified for the Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes, but it was not her day.
The winner of the race receives a ballot exemption to the Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes. Only five fillies have taken advantage of that perk. The most recent was Kiamichi (2019), preceded by Bint Marscay (1993), Bounding Away (1986), Dark Eclipse (1980) and Toy Show in 1975, the inaugural year of the Magic Night Stakes.
Racers in the Magic Night Stakes might be coming off tries in the Group 2 Silver Slipper or the Group 3 Sweet Embrace Stakes, although it should be said that when it comes to juvenile fillies, good form is hard to come by.
The race is held at a Saturday Rosehill meeting that features the Group 1 Coolmore Classic and other Group races dedicated to some great gallopers. The Group 2 races on the day are the Ajax Stakes and the Phar Lap Stakes. Group 3 grade races are the Sky High Stakes, Magic Night Stakes and the Pago Pago Stakes, with the Group 3 Maurice McCarten Stakes for good measure.
History of the Magic Night Stakes
Magic Night was the winner of the 1961 Golden Slipper Stakes. She ran third to Young Brolga in the 1961 Group 1 Sires’ Produce Stakes, the one she beat to win the Golden Slipper.
She was by Star Kingdom.
We must interject that we think Magic Night is a superb name for any gender racehorse and thus, Magic Night Stakes a great choice for a race. Magic Night would also be a good theme for a high school promenade.
The race had its first jump in 1975 and ran as the Magic Night Quality Handicap through 1984, with a slight modification to the Magic night Quality Stakes holding sway from 1985 – 1988. The race name changed and has remained the more abbreviated Magic Night Stakes since 1989.
The race has always been 1200 metres in length.
It was Principal Grade through the inception of the Group grading system, spending 1979 – 1986 at Principal grade. It was lifted to Group 3 in 1980, and then spent 1986 – 2016 at Group 2 level, before being downgraded to Group 3 since 2017.
Venue for the Magic Night
Without exception, the Magic Night Stakes has always been held at Rosehill Gardens Racecourse in Sydney.
Rosehill has been holding races since 1885 and is the place to be for autumn Group racing, with March sending off about half of the Group grade races held there.
The key race is the Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes, but in 2019, Rosehill got its own big-money race in 2019, the $10 million Golden Eagle, a 1500 metre race for four-year-olds. The race raises money for Racing NSW accredited charities through each runner representing a different charity.
The Rosehill course itself is fairly typical of the major Australian tracks, with a circumference of 2048 metres and a 408 finishing straight.
For a 1200 metre race, the runners jump near the head of the back straight, run the tightest of Rosehill’s relatively benign turns, and then hit the home straight to finish in front of the stands on the northwest side of the course.
Racing History of the Magic Night Stakes
Juvenile races of any sort are popular, those limited to fillies perhaps more so, even though the lack of form might pose a challenge to punters.
The Magic Night Stakes has had some nice types for winners. We will look through the list for fillies that went on to solid careers as racers, as well as any that supplied better progeny.
Right away, we have one in the 1975 winner, Toy Show.
A 1972 northern hemisphere filly, Toy Show won the Golden Slipper Stakes the same year, and then added the Sires’ Produce Stakes, Ascot Vale Stakes (Coolmore Stud Stakes), William Reid Stakes, Thousand Guineas and the Newmarket Handicap. She demonstrated that no matter how odd NSW clockwise would feel to us were we horses, it was not an issue for her to win in either direction.
In all, seven of her wins were in races that would eventually become Group 1 grade and the Magic Night Stakes would rise to Group2, if only temporarily.
All that success earned Toy Show about $243,000. Had she been racing recently; those wins would have brought in $6.4 million. That is over 26 times what she was paid for racing when she did.
After racing, Toy Show supplied two colts and six fillies, five of which won some races and a little money, but as we often learn, a great racer does not guarantee great offspring.
These days, Randwick stages the Group 3 Toy Show Quality in her honour.
The Magic Night Stakes was run in divisions in 1976.
As You Like It was one winner; the other was Glen Vain.
Neither was notable, but Glen Vain was by THE Vain and Glen Vain was a male horse, so we must surmise that the gender requirements for the race changed at some point, or that one division was for fillies and the other for colts. Another possibility is that one of the divisions was eventually split off to become the current Pago Pago Stakes.
While not much as a racer, As You Like It liked it often, supplying four colts and five fillies to the likes of Baguette, Biscay and Bletchingly, but none of those progeny accomplished much by racing.
Our theory about divisions and the Magic Night Stakes spawning the Pago Pago Stakes was shot full of flames and went down in holes when we saw the 1977 winner, Lloyd Boy.
We will simply cop to the fact that the Magic Night Stakes was at one time open to colts as well as fillies and admit that we don’t know when the race became gender-restricted in hopes that we will learn along the way.
The 1978 winner, Jubilee Walk, WAS a filly and she would win the Flight Stakes that same year, just a few years too early to be credited with a Group 1 win.
The relative paucity of good records from the late 70s once again reared its head in the case of the 1979 winner, Century Miss.
Two sources credit her as winning the 1979 Golden Slipper Stakes, while another source does not credit her with the double of the Slipper/Magic Night.
Century Miss made 12 jumps for 5 wins and 1 placing. What makes her notable in our view is that she supplied 14 foals. That’s right. She had more foals than jumps. None were exceptional, perhaps less than handy, despite the involvement of top sires, including Bletchingly, Kingdom Bay, Kaoru Star and Sir Tristam.
The 1980 winner, Dark Eclipse, most assuredly won the Golden Slipper. She was by Baguette, which supplies a line to Star Kingdom.
We are skipping ahead to the next Golden Slipper/ Magic Night Stakes doubler, 1986’s Bounding Away.
She was by Biscay with Star Kingdom as grandsire.
For 1986, her stakes earnings of above $1.4 million make quite an impression. She was Australian Horse of the Year for the 1985 – 86 season, bred and trained by T.J. Smith.
Other Group 1 wins by her were the Champagne Stakes, Flight Stakes (second year at Group 1 grade), AJC (prior to the advent of the ATC) Oaks, Blue Diamond Stakes, and the Orlando Classic (now the Coolmore Classic).
Bounding Away needed just 22 jumps for 9 wins and 6 placings to earn her prizemoney.
Moving ahead again, the 1993 winner was another to add the Golden Slipper to her haul.
She was Bint Marscay.
She needed only 10 jumps for 4 wins and 4 placings to amass over $1.5 million. Just goes to show what winning the Golden Slipper will do to a bank. Even in 1993, the Golden Slipper awarded over $1.2 million to the winner.
She supplied three fillies and two colts, with 1997’s filly Mannington by Danehill winning almost $400,000 and 1999’s filly Bollinger by Dehere accounting for more than $670,000.
After Bint Marscay winning the Golden Slipper/Magic Night double, it would be a long time before the feat was again accomplished.
Given the solid calibre of the winners we have so far encountered, we can be certain that we are jumping over some better types to 2003, when the winner was the good galloper Shameka.
Shameka was of primarily northern hemisphere lines, with just her dam Lifetime Story representing Oz.
She made 24 jumps for 8 wins and 7 placings for just under $1.9 million, with Group 1 wins in the Coolmore Classic, the T. J. Smith Stakes and the All-Aged Stakes. She beat none other than eventual super-sire Fastnet Rock to win the T. J. Smith and it was the better type Private Steer that fell to her in the Coolmore Classic.
Her stud record included being served by Fastnet Rock. Others that we graced to know her were Encosta De Lago, Redoute’s Choice, Medaglia D’ Oro and Snitzel.
Her best was the 2014 filly by Dream Ahead that won over $500,000.
The 2005 winner of the Magic Night Stakes was Media.
She was not exceptional, but she did win the Group 3 San Domenico Stakes the same year, putting Written Tycoon and Snitzel behind her.
The 2008 winner was Portillo.
She used her ballot exemption to her benefit, placing third in the Golden Slipper, even though her $21 starting price was shorter than just two others in the field.
She supplied six fillies and one colt to sires such as Snitzel, Street Cry, Exceed And Excel, Medaglia D’ Oro and three by Lonrho, one of which was the 2012 filly Ghisoni that won above $370,000.
At the risk of jumping over better than handy racers and breeders, we find ourselves at 2018.
The winner of the Magic Night Stakes that year was Sunlight.
Sunlight was by Zoustar, so her lines include Encosta De Lago and Redoute’s Choice.
She won over $6.5 million from 24 jumps for 11 wins and 8 placings.
She jumped favourite in the Golden Slipper, but she was third, with Estijaab the winner and Oohood just a little too good for her in second.
She compensated for that by having earlier won the Magic Millions 2YO Classic in comfortable fashion from Fullazaboot and Outback Barbie.
She had beaten Estijaab in the Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes. In the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap, she beat Osborne Bulls and Brave Smash, and she beat Santa Ana Lane and Zoutori in the 2019 Group 2 Gilgai Stakes.
Where she truly helped her connections, though, was when she fetched $4.2 million from Coolmore Stud at the 2020 magic Millions Broodmare Sale.
At stud, her first pairing was with the U.S. Triple Crown winner Justify. That union produced a foal, a colt, in 2021.
The final filly to win the Magic Night Stakes and the Golden Slipper Stakes was Kiamichi in 2019.
Her lines on the side of her sire Sidestep include Exceed And Excel and Danehill, while on the side of her dam Ouchita, the likes of Canny Lad, Bletchingly and Biscay will be found. For us though, all of Kiamichi’s talent came from a certain sire five generations back on her dam’s side, a certain Star Kingdom.
Kiamichi’s racing supplied more than $2.3 million from just 13 jumps for 3 wins and 3 placings, further evidence of the value of winning the Golden Slipper Stakes, her only Group 1 win - Tipping
She jumped $26 in the Golden Slipper to beat Hugh Bowman steered Microphone a length and she was far ahead of the big money winner Yes Yes Yes and many others much shorter than her.
The last Magic Night Stakes winner at which we will look is the 2022 winner, She’s Extreme.
She is by Extreme Choice, so she has lines to Not A Single Doubt, Redoute’s Choice and Danehill on both sides of the table, with other great gallopers too numerous to mention.
She is currently spelling, as of early April 2023, with over $1.6 million from 11 jumps for 3 wins and 5 placings. She was well out of the running in her bid for the Golden Slipper Stakes, but she ran second next up in the Group 1 Sires’ Produce Stakes before scoring a win in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes. After a third in the Group 2 Furious Stakes, a sixth in the Group 1 Golden Rose and a second in the Group 1 Flight Stakes, she ran third in the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes.
Her next and as of early April 2023, last jump supplied a win in the Group 1 VRC Oaks.
The Magic Night Stakes attracts better two-year-old fillies that use the race as a lead-up to the Golden Slipper Stakes.
Many have gone on to win major races following the win and quite a few only raced a few more times, as they were seen as more valuable and slightly safer as breeders, although it should be said that pushing a 45 kilogram foal through a somewhat narrow birth canal carries risks of its own.
Magic Night Stakes Past Winners
|2014||Bring Me The Maid|
|1981||Food For Love|
|1976||As You Like It|