HOW DID SHE DO THAT? We Celebrate Winx's Six Greatest Wins
"Oh, no. This time she'll get beaten for sure." It's a thing Winx fans have told themselves so many times.
Yet somehow, she always does it. The timing of jockey Hugh Bowman's run. Her superior stride rate. Her sheer, unwavering will to win. All of it combines to break other horses' hearts.
So then. Ahead of the retirement of the champ as she seeks her 33rd straight win in today's Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick, let's relive six of Winx's greatest wins in chronological order.
And where else to start but at the very beginning?
1. The Sunshine Coast Guineas, May 2015
On the 16th of May 2015, Winx was a well-performed but hardly extraordinary galloper who had won just three of her 10 races. In a relatively minor race on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, she charged home from an impossible position in a huge 18 horse field.
Her jockey that day, Larry Cassidy, was convinced he'd just ridden the finest thoroughbred in his decorated career. His wife called him a "bloody idiot" for daring to think that. But he was right.
2. The Cox Plate, October 2016
Winx went on to win a lot more races in 2015, including her first Cox Plate. But of her unprecedented four consecutive Cox Plates, it's the 2016 version that will live on in people's memory.
When Winx and second favourite Hartnell took off with 600 metres to go, the race caller said "the two champs go together!"
Wrong on two counts. Firstly, Hartnell is a fine animal, but was one level short of champion status. And secondly, sure, they were together for a second or two. But then, whoosh! Winx was off and gone, winning the great race by a record eight lengths.
3. The Warwick Stakes, September 2017
Let's cut to 2017. Winx breezed through the autumn unbeaten, then had her customary midyear spell in a lovely paddock. In her first race, back, disaster! Winx missed the start by four lengths.
No problemo. Somehow she recovered and nailed stablemate Foxplay right on the line. And for the record, the Warwick Stakes would eventually be renamed the Winx Stakes.
4. The Chelmsford Stakes, September 2017
Winx's very next run in the Chelmsford Stakes was no less dramatic.
This time, the drama was not of her own making. A bold galloper called Red Excitement took off, streaking ahead of the field in a daring game of "catch me if you can".
Of course Winx could. But for a long, long time there, it felt like she couldn't.
5. The Turnbull Stakes, October 2018
Winx always seemed to find herself in trouble in at least one race en route to the Cox Plate. In the spring of 2018 it was the Turnbull Stakes.
Winx settled last. In the straight, she was trapped behind the proverbial wall of horses, desperately seeking a gap. BUT WOULD THAT GAP EVER APPEAR?
It did at last, and Winx went "Seeya, suckers!" Winxy was so impressed with herself, she tweeted about it.
6. The Chipping Norton Stakes, March 2019.
Give Happy Clapper credit. Like Red Excitement in 2017 (number four in our list), he tried to steal the race with a bold front-running ride.
Happy Clapper is probably Winx's best-credentialled rival, and a winner of many big races in his own right. He's a worthy foe. But Winx hauled him in.
Because of course she did. Because Winx.