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The Lindsay Park-trained filly Catchy confirmed her favouritism for the Blue Diamond Stakes 2017 at the end of the month with a tenacious late win in the Ladbrokes Blue Diamond Fillies Prelude.
Co-trainer David Hayes could be in line to secure his sixth Blue Diamond Stakes trophy with Fastnet Rock filly Catchy looking the goods for the $1.5 million Group 1 on February 25.
The always improving filly started warm favourite on CF Orr Stakes Day at Caulfield in the $200,000 Group 2 Ladbrokes Blue Diamond Prelude (F) over 1100m after winning her opening two career starts.
In early January she hold the colt Property’s measure over 1100m at the track for a two and a quarter length win, but didn’t have as much to spare on the line in the Blue Diamond Prelude defeating the Darren Weir-trained Limestone.
Settled back off the pace in the set weights showdown by jockey Craig Williams, Catchy was really asked to give more than she had before late to make up ground in the sprint home peeling out three wide at the turn to make her run.
“She took a bit of work today,” Williams, who is yet to make a decision of whether he’ll stick on Catchy in the Blue Diamond Stakes, said post-win.
“I presented her early and I asked her to flatten out.”
Give she did, showing terrific versatility with the winkers on for the first time to hit the line first by the bob of a head over Helmet filly Limestone who came off a win in the Blue Diamond Preview.
“It was the first time she’s been put under that pressure,” Williams said.
“I’m glad she prevailed.
“True to form again. She is a two-year-old girl but she is built like a three-year-old boy.”
Pacesetter Arctic Angel for Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra held for third to round out the trifecta in her first run since winning Sandown’s Listed Merson Cooper Stakes (1000m) at Sandown last November.
“I love her versatility,” co-trainer Tom Dabernig said.
“Today we just rode her back with the winkers on for the first time and she just savaged the line.
“Take nothing away from Limestone, I thought that was a terrific run.
“But our filly is just exceptionally good.
“The 1200 [metres] of the Blue Diamond will be right up her alley and I think in time even further [distance] might be better again.”
Asked where Catchy stood in Lindsay Park’s current crop of Blue Diamond Stakes hopes Dabernig said she was now the top seed and that Williams would be “mad” not to ride her in the Group 1.
“Off that performance today you’d have to rate her up the top,” he said.
“Her form is impressive and that was an excellent run.
“I’ll be intrigued to see what Craig does, but I think he is mad to be jumping off her.”
The last filly to win the Blue Diamond Stakes was Earthquake (2014) who was the third on the trot to beat home the boys.
She completed the Blue Diamond Prelude – Blue Diamond Stakes double that Catchy is after in 2017, as did Samaready (2012).
To check out the updated Blue Diamond Stakes 2017 odds after the Blue Diamond Prelude results head to race sponsor Ladbrokes.com.au now – home of Odds Boost (T&Cs apply).
2017 Blue Diamond Fillies Prelude Results & Finishing Order
Caulfield Race 3 – 11/02/2017
|1||3||CATCHY||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Craig Williams||–||6||55.5kg||$2.45F|
|2||1||LIMESTONE||Darren Weir||Damian Lane||0.1L||3||55.5kg||$3|
|3||2||ARCTIC ANGEL||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Kerrin McEvoy||1.35L||4||55.5kg||$6.50|
|4||4||ROOMOOZ||Tony McEvoy||Dwayne Dunn||1.75L||1||55.5kg||$7|
|5||7||PANDEMONIUM||Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott||Stephen Baster||2.25L||5||55.5kg||$26|
|6||6||ZARPOYA||Robbie Griffiths||Ben E Thompson (a)||6.5L||2||55.5kg||$51|
|7||9||FABRICATION||Robbie Griffiths||Ryan Maloney||9.5L||7||55.5kg||$31|
|–||5||BLONDIE||Brendan McCarthy||Damien Oliver||–||0||–||–|
|–||8||CHERIEF’S CHOICE||Robbie Griffiths||Jye McNeil||–||0||–||–|
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