Petits Filous back for more at the Moonee Valley races

Trainers are always looking for the X-factor with horses and Ciaron Maher thinks impressive debut winner Petits Filous has it.

The three-year-old daughter of Street Boss returns to Moonee Valley, the scene of her debut win, on Saturday to contest the United Refrigeration Handicap over 1000m.

Petits Filous was clearly the most impressive winner of the four 1000m races at Moonee Valley on July 15, recording a time 1.8 seconds quicker than any of the other races.

“Right from day one she has shown she’s always had that X-factor about her,” Maher told Melbourne radio station RSN.

“I think she’s got what it takes to make that next step.”

Petits Filous, to be ridden by premier Melbourne jockey Damien Oliver, is the $1.80 favourite to take honours on Saturday.

She will be pitted against The Big Dance ($3.40), an impressive Bendigo winner in quick time at her only run in March and Listed winner Haybah ($11).

Maher said Petits Filous’ favourable barrier draw meant she would not have to push forward and lead and he expected her to get a good run behind the speed.

Her performance on Saturday will determine spring plans, but Maher said the Group Three Quezette Stakes at Caulfield on August 15 was a likely option.

“I doubt we’ll go really deep into the spring as it’s her first prep,” he said.

“Depending on how she goes tomorrow maybe the Quezette as it holds some black type.”

Maher will also saddle Hard Romp in the Melbourne Signage Concepts Handicap (1000m) on Saturday.

Hard Romp is the $3.60 second favourite behind Il Cavallo ($2.65).

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