Favourite Skybird will start from barrier two in Saturday’s Group 1 Thousand Guineas at Caulfield, and she will be partnered by star jockey Beau Mertens.
The Mitch Freedman trained filly, who carries the Scalzo family colours, heads in as favourite after a jaw-dropping last-to-first win in the Group 2 Fillies Classic at the Valley on Cox Plate Day, which followed wins at Ballarat and Bendigo at her first two starts.
“We always thought she had pretty good ability, so it hasn’t shocked me, but it’s been pleasing to see,” Freedman said when asked what he made of Skybird’s first three starts.
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Freedman bought Skybird for $110,000 at last year’s Inglis Classic Sale.
“She’s by a stallion out of fashion from a broodmare sire that’s probably not doing all that much, but we just try and buy the athletes and the pedigree probably determines whether we can afford it or not,” he said.
“She was just a really athletic horse and she’s putting it together on raceday now.”
Despite this, our experts are a little cautious, with joint race favourite Coeur Volante preferred.
Race 7, Thousand Guineas, Caulfield
Emma Freedman: #6 JOLIESTAR
Jason Richardson: #2 COEUR VOLANTE
Lizzie Jelfs: #2 COEUR VOLANTE
Katelyn McDonald: #2 COEUR VOLANTE
Richo’s Roughie: #13 QUICKSTAR
Dudley (The 7 computer): #1 KIMOCHI
The Insider: #1 KIMOCHI
Notes: Placed in the Group 1 Flight Stakes [1600m] in Sydney two starts back then lacked fitness when five weeks between runs at Flemington last start. Also charted a wide course there suggesting she might be the big improver. Will settle in front of the favourite, Skybird, and gets superstar rider Craig Williams in the saddle.
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– With RAS NewsWire