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Norzita wins Flight Stakes for Bart
By Caryl Williamson
17:17 AEST Sat Oct 6 2012

Bart Cummings' first visit to the races for the spring worked like a charm with Norzita bringing up Group One win No. 265 for the master trainer in the Flight Stakes at Randwick.

Cummings has been an absentee after undergoing nasal surgery which has affected his eyesight but not his wit.

Norzita was denied victory in the Group Two Tea Rose Stakes two weeks ago when Longport was awarded the race on protest but there was no mistaking the result in the Flight (1600m).

"Justice has been done," Cummings said.

Longport ($14) led into the straight but had little answer when Norzita ($5.50) charged her down and drew away to win by 2-1/2 lengths.

Dear Demi ($5.50) was another 1-1/2 lengths third with favourite Urban Groove ($2.80) finding the step up in distance and class too steep, finishing fourth.

Cummings is planning his 266th Group One with Norzita in the Thousand Guineas at Caulfield on Wednesday week.

"The Thousand Guineas looks ideal," he said.

"When they are winning you keep them going."

Hugh Bowman replaced Corey Brown on Norzita and showed his excitement when he stood up in the irons and saluted the crowd.

"It is a privilege and an honour to ride for Bart," he said.

"I've been riding for him since I was an apprentice but with my weight now I haven't had a lot of opportunities for him.

"This filly was travelling so well a long way out and just felt so strong."

The Cummings-trained Duet finished fifth and the trainer also has Group One ambitions for her.

"I think she might be an Oaks filly this spring," he said.

"She looks like a stayer."

Cummings posed for pictures flanked by his grandsons Edward and James but shunned the presentation ceremony, preferring to get inside out of the rain which fell steadily at Randwick.

Norzita is raced by Cummings' long-time friend and client, Malaysian businessman Dato Tan Chin Nam for whom he has trained four Melbourne Cup winners.

Dear Demi's mission is the Oaks and trainer Clarry Conners is hoping for better luck over further after the filly was trapped wide and further forward than expected.

"It's disappointing," he said. "We didn't want to be up there.

"James (McDonald) didn't want to be trapped wide so he went forward.

"He said she wants 2000 metres now and he might be right.

"Things don't change and she still goes to the Oaks."