The market well for the Blue Diamond Stakes well and truly reacted to last Saturday’s Group Three Chairman’s Stakes, with winner and current Blue Diamond Favourite Extreme Choice firming right in.
The Mick Price-trained colt went from $5 to $2.70 for the Blue Diamond in three weeks after his 1st up 4-1/2 length victory at Caulfield on Saturday.
You might remember Samaready what a star he was. Well he was also trained by Mick Price and this is how he compared them
“He reminds me very much of Samaready, as in being a natural,” Price said.
“We think he’ll get it (the 1200m) pretty well,” Price said.
“We think he’s going to be a red-hot chance in the race for sure.”
Ridden by Damien Oliver, Extreme Choice went to the front, and never looked like getting into more of a canter as he went on to win by 4 lengths. His toughest opponent? The clock and he gave that a belting too.
Oliver then allowed Extreme Choice to cruise to the post to defeat Highland Beat with Gratwick three-quarters of a length away third.
“I suppose raceday tells all, as it did,” Price said.
“The main thing is he was strong to the line, the time was good and he did it with something up his sleeve,” Price said.
What about Capitalist though the Magic Millions 2yo winner and current Golden Slipper favourite. Before the race according to Timeform, Extreme Choice sat a pound below Capitalist rated at 116, but 57.09 seconds later it was a different story. Extreme Choice now is the highest rated 2yo in Australia at 118. Given a harder opposition though Extreme Choices rating might have been even higher but in fairness to Capitalist he has been stuck to mainly restricted races.
The track at Caulfield was a good 3 and played very fast allowing for some very flattering times, but still Even so 57.09 was, and is, very slick for a two-year-old. Since a very fast day in February 2000, when the Blue Diamond Previews were run in 56.86 and 56.97, only two juveniles have gone inside Extreme Choice’s mark, Crystal Lily in 2010 and Murphy’s Blu Boy in 2003.
Extreme Choice’s sectionals seem to say he should handle the 1200m so let’s hope he goes OK in the Blue Diamond and what a race it would be if he faced off with Capitalist in the Golden Slipper.