This Saturday Caulfield horseman Mick Price will saddle-up promising juvenile Eclat for her race debut in the 2014 Magic Millions Clockwise Classic at Ballarat Racecourse.
The two-year-old daughter of Beneteau comes into this year’s $200,000 Magic Millions Clockwise Classic (1000m), running as Ballarat Cup Day Race 6 at 3:25pm, is one of four debutants in the summer lead-up.
Drawn just worse than mid-field in barrier six with Craig Newitt to ride, Eclat will be racing the right-handed way of going with the Clockwise Classic run the opposite direction to all other Victorian races.
The reason for the direction change is prepare the youngsters for a likely trip to Queensland for the Gold Coast’s $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic (1200m) on January 10 next year.
Saturday will be the third running of the Ballarat Clockwise Classic, and last year all three youngsters in the trifecta went on to run in the lucrative Gold Coast Magic Millions Classic two months later.
O’Brien is confident Eclat, rated a $13 chance in the Magic Millions Clockwise Classic odds at Ladbrokes.com.au, can handle the right-way of racing and is set for a nice debut run but needs to be convinced she’s good enough for a trip north to the Gold Coast.
“I don’t think I’m going to have enough horse to go to the Magic Millions,” Price told AAP.
“If she was to win I would ask the question, but I don’t think I’ve got the horse to get me there at the moment.”
A $65,000 bargain buy, Eclat had a barrier trial at Ballarat earlier this season when narrowly defeated but subsequent Morphettville winner on debut last month Atlanta Miss.
For her own debut, Price’s filly faces a talented field of rivals including the first two over the line in the Group 3 Maribyrnong Plate (1000m) at Flemington from Emirates Stakes Day.
Two length winner that day, Beneteau colt Prompt Return is hot $2 favourite to post his third win from as many starts this weekend while the horse he beat home in the Maribyrnong Plate on November 8, Old Trieste is $6 second pick with the rails run on Saturday for the re-match.
Eclat worked with Old Trieste on Tuesday the reverse way in preparation for Saturday, but sat wide throughout.
“She trialled alongside Paddy Payne’s two-year-old (Atlanta Miss) that had won in Adelaide at Ballarat,” Price said.
“Even though they were on terms, we didn’t trial as good and she worked the reverse way with Old Trieste on Tuesday.
“There wasn’t a lot between them but he was probably going the better, so I think realistically she’s a chance of running a place.
“She hasn’t been shinsore but it’s early in her career for her and she’s not readily precocious so I think she will get a good deal out of this race.”
The other feature restricted race at Ballarat on Saturday is the $100,000 Magic Millions 3YO Classic (1100m) running as Race 4 and featuring the likes of I’m A Flying Star on the rails and the Matthew Williams-trained Reigning Meteor.
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