Classy filly I Am A Star has added another feature win at Flemington but was forced to work overtime to deny West Australian visitor Ellicazoom.
The Group One Myer Classic winner from last spring, I Am A Star was clearly the highest-rated filly in Saturday's Group Two Kewney Stakes and got home by half a head in a driving finish over the Neville Parnham-trained Ellicazoom.
They were 1-1/2 lengths in front of third-placed Kenedna.
I Am A Star was dropping back to fillies' grade and stepping up to 1400m on Saturday after finishing second in the Rubiton Stakes and seventh in the Group One Oakleigh Plate (1100m) against older horses this campaign.
The Shane Nichols-trained filly took her record to five wins from 12 starts but remains unbeaten from three starts at Flemington since the Myer Classic.
"To be three from three at Flemington is a big buzz and a big wrap on a very good filly," Nichols said.
He said I Am A Star ($2 fav) really had to knuckle down in the straight after trailing Ellicazoom during the race, with Ellicazoom crossing from a deeper draw to sit outside the lead.
"That was a gutsy win," Nichols said.
"Lucky she got the bob in and was able to prevail. It was a very exciting win."
The Group Two Sunline Stakes (1600m) at Mooney Valley is slated as I Am A Star's next start before a decision on whether she heads to Sydney.
Ellicazoom kept rallying in the straight but had to settle for a close second for the second time from as many starts in Melbourne.
Jockey Steven Parnham felt a wide barrier cost Ellicazoom victory in the Angus Armanasco Stakes last start and believed a better draw on Saturday might also have made a difference.
"Once again she was very tough and it was a gutsy effort," Parnham said.
By Mathew Toogood
MELBOURNE, March 11 AAP