Robert Smerdon’s Fontiton has firmed as the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) favourite following her dominant win in the Group 2 Blue Diamond Fillies Prelude (1100m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
Extending her unbeaten winning streak to three, the two-year-old filly powered past her 13 rivals to register a brilliant win. She also managed to win one second quicker than Of The Brave in the colts and gelding’s Prelude the following race.
Fontiton was the $2.50 favourite with Ladbrokes.com.au heading into the Prelude, justifying her price in a strong win. The filly settled back in fourth place following a solid tempo out the gates. She was asked for more effort by hoop Mark Zahra when rounding the home turn, finding the front with 100 metres to go before drawing clear to win one and three-quarter lengths ahead of Miss Gidget ($31), who ran well in second place. Gai Waterhouse’s Flamboyant Lass ($5) rounded out the top three.
“I was impressed by the way she went through the line because when she straightened she had to be put under pressure and she had to fight,” Smerdon said.
“She did that and she found the line.”
Fontiton has been at the top of the Blue Diamond betting since it opened after dominantly winning her debut back in October before narrowly winning the Group 3 Blue Diamond Fillies Preview (1000m) on her return last month.
Following her Prelude win, Fontiton is the $2.60 firm favourite to win the 2015 Blue Diamond Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au.
Jockey Mark Zahra believes the filly has what it takes to win the $1 million feature race on February 28, since she raced as if she was already looking for 1200 metres on Saturday.
“The way she won it’s like she is looking for 1200,” Zahra said.
“I came off the bit at the top of the straight. Going to a Blue Diamond I could not be happier.
“They were really running along, they were getting away and I wanted to keep in touch. She wanted to do a few things wrong like lay in behind them.
“Once she got her balance and like a lot of good horses they find off the bit. I’m always confident with her, she’s so relaxed.
“Good horses are the ones that can travel off the bit then pick up really good.”
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