The Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Bodyguard (+320) demolished his rivals in the Group 3 Blue Diamond Prelude (1100m) at Caulfield on Saturday afternoon, staking his claim for Group 1 glory later in the campaign.
The son of I Am Invincible was given a confident steer by Mark Zahra from barrier nine, sliding across to sit three wide throughout, gaining cover on the eventual runner-up Stay Focused (+240).
The speed was genuine courtesy of Innervisions (+5000) who elected to bowl along on speed, ensuring a testing 1100m for the two-year-old, allowing some eye-catching performances in behind the speed.
Bodyguard showed an electric turn-of-foot at the top of the straight, bounding clear of his rivals and putting some significant margins through the field despite not gaining the most economical runs in transit.
Favourite backers may be a shade disappointed in High Octane (+130), but it was a forgivable effort as the Snowden stablemate didn’t have much room to move on the inside running rail, unable to be tested in the concluding stages.
It was all honours the winner however, as Bodyguard appears primed to tackle the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) in a fortnight.
2024 Group 3 Blue Diamond Prelude Replay – Bodyguard
Co-trainer Peter Snowden was on course to breakdown the win and believes Bodyguard will be primed for a Group 1 tilt.
“I think it was a perfect ride,” said Snowden.
“First time at Caulfield, Sydney horses if they get on the wrong leg you’ve just got to coax them around the corner but when you’re buried away inside and can’t see air it takes longer for them to change stride but he’s a very professional horse this bloke, it was good to see what he did late.
“He’s a very talented horse.”
Mark Zahra rode High Octane for his debut and joked he though he may have hopped aboard the wrong Snowden galloper.
“He’s a bit of a race day horse and to be honest after the last one I said to Peter “do I have to ride a certain one here” and he said just stick with Bodyguard and he knows more than me,” joked Zahra.
“His trials were okay, I wouldn’t say amazing, I said after his last one he trialled good, could’ve trialled better, but the difference is, race day vibe, good atmosphere, he was up and about, one around his bum and he was away, he had it won a long way out. It was a good victory.”
Bodyguard has now firmed into the third line of betting for the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes and is currently a +500 chance with horse racing bookmakers.