Lightly-raced filly Diamond Glow will return to the races for the first time in almost a year when she contests the Birdcage Handicap (1000m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Diamond Glow stamped herself as a contender for the 2013 Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) with an impressive victory over Self Sense and Devil Woman in the Ian Miller Plate (1000m) at Caulfield on January 5, but Moody elected to send the daughter of Bel Esprit to the spelling paddock after she finished second behind Miracles Of Life in the Listed Blue Diamond Preview (1000m) at the same venue on January 26.
Moody was set Diamond Glow for a 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign, but she contracted a virus just before she was about to return to racing; leaving Moody with very limited options.
If Diamond Glow can replicate the from that she showed during her two starts as a juvenile she should prove tough to beat in the Birdcage Handicap, but Moody admits that it may be tough for the classy filly to perform strongly after such a long time away from the races.
“Structurally she was fine, but when we brought her back in she got a virus,” Moody told TVN.
“I had her all bar ready to race in the spring and she got a virus. I brought her back into work, but the spring was over and I had nowhere to go with her.
“She was going to be racing in December, but there was nothing for her so I gave her a bit of work then she had a let up again.
“She’s pretty fit, she’s had a couple of jump outs but she will improve because basically she has been away from the races for 12 months.”
Diamond Glow ($4.20) is currently a narrow favourite in 2014 Birdcage Handicap betting markets, but there has also been support for last start winner Whistle Baby ($5), Matthew Ellerton and Simon Zahra-trained Leaps And Bounds ($7) as well as experienced mare Mrs Hadlee ($8).
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