The inaugural running of the Verry Elleegant Stakes has taken on a fresh poignancy with the sudden and tragic death of the incredibly talented race mare last week.

For her trainer Chris Waller, who will be represented by up to four runners including odds-on favourite Fangirl, a victory would be a fitting tribute.

However, with emotions still raw, Waller says it is too soon for him to articulate what winning the race would mean, let alone how it might feel.

"I can't put it into words yet," Waller said.

One of Australia's most popular mares, Verry Elleegant died while giving birth to her first foal in France earlier this month.

As quirky as she was talented, she won 16 races, among them a Melbourne Cup (2021), Caulfield Cup (2020), an Oaks (2019), a Winx Stakes (2020) and two Chipping Norton Stakes (2021-20) – the latter renamed in her honour.

Her 11 Group 1 wins came over distances ranging from 1400m to 3200m, showcasing her extreme versatility and endearing her to many, especially regular jockey James Mcdonald.

"She was a special one, wasn't she. She was incredible from day dot," McDonald said.

"She was never easy, but she just wore her heart on her sleeve every time she put her hoof onto a racetrack, whether it was a seven-furlong (1400m) or a 3200-metre race, she was just incredible.

"He courage and will to win was something to behold."

At Randwick on Saturday, Waller and McDonald will team with Fangirl in a bid to win the race named after the mare who settled herself into the hearts of both men.

A high-class horse throughout her career, Fangirl showed a glimmer of greatness with her stunning first-up victory in the Apollo Stakes (1400m), rounding up her rivals with ease and winning as she liked.

It was hard to escape an immediate comparison to some of Winx's performances, even for the normally conservative Waller.

"It was a bit Winx-like," he said.

"She eased back early, found her rhythm, came out three-wide, sprinted quickly. It was just arrogant.

"She wasn't wound up, so to do it like that was very good to see.

"I am trying to keep a level head about it, but she has certainly come back well."

Fangirl's stablemate Buckaroo also has a close Verry Elleegant connection with some of his owners, including Ozzie Kheir and John O'Neill, having raced the star mare.

Waller said a victory by the import would be equally significant, although he believed Buckaroo would be better suited once he extended to 2000 metres.

"It would be pretty special (if Buckaroo won). But I feel he is more a Ranvet (Stakes) horse," Waller said.