Lloyd Kennewell has a big opinion of this three year-old Siyouni colt, who cast off maiden status at Cranbourne on Thursday with a facile victory.

Second on debut to Paulele last November, Direct tried his luck against the big guns in Sydney during the autumn running third in the Group II ATC Silver Slipper to home Affairs and sixth in the Group II ATC Todman Stakes to Anamoe.

Second and fifth at his first two runs back from a spell, Direct appreciated a drop back to maiden grade for this assignment and led all the way for Joe Bowditch to score a confidence building win over another stakes-placegetter in Nice for What, the half-sister to Group I winner Montefilia.

He ran away ay the finish to win by more than two lengths and will take a lot of mental benefit from the experience.

“It was good to see him win like that as it was like a mini stakes race,” said Kennewell.

“He’s still developing and we were trying to get him to settle, but today I thought let a fast horse be fast in a 1000m maiden and he showed them a clean set of hooves.

“I think he’s Group quality, but can he measure up over the spring? We’ll find out shortly.”

Kennewell is looking to Caulfield in two weeks time for a 1000m three year-old race as another stepping stone.

A $400,000 Magic Millions purchase for Kennewell Racing/Group 1 Bloodstock P/L from the Yarraman Park draft, Direct was bred by Dalanna Bloodstock and Foxwood Stables, who retain an interest in his ownership.

Foaled and raised at Yarraman, he is the first foal from Upfront (USA), a placed War Front mare from Galileo’s Group II winning daughter Up, a half-sister to dual Group I winning sprinter Dutch Art.

Racing Image: Racing Photos