Cox Plate aspirant Happy Trails has been a leading light for Cornerstone Stud's Good Journey (USA) but the royally-bred stallion had a day out at Santa Anita on Saturday.
Trainer Mike Puype sent out first starter Home Journey (Good Journey x Goodtobehome by Came Home) in a 6-furlong maiden and the filly duly landed the prize by two and three-quarter lengths.
But better things were in store for the trainer when 3yo filly Bella Viaggia (Good Journey x Miss Del Mar by American Chance) took her record to 3 wins and 1 second from 4 starts with a dominant two length win over her elders in the John Deere California Cup Distaff Stakes.
Racing on the turf for the first time, Bella Viaggia came from midfield under Joe Talamo to score impressively in the $100,000 feature.
"It was a big race; big effort," said Puype
"She has a great future. When horses want to win like that, and they come out running, those are seasoned horses. "She showed a big race today to be like that. Let me tell you, she works this main track like no other. She runs on synthetic too, and trains on the dirt better than both of them so I think I can go anywhere where there's a race. Her weight is unbelievable right now. She looks great. She had bled at Del Mar in her second start and it was very unexpected. To then come back and win when she wasn't quite right was good, but she's even better now. I think it was just getting too amped up there because that can happen at Del Mar. It's not been a chronic problem for her, but she was very good today."
Good Journey (USA) is covering his ninth book of mares in Australia this season at Cornerstone Stud where his fee has been set at $8,800.