The 2015 Blue Diamond Stakes field has been released and 15 talented juveniles are set to contest the Group 1 event at Caulfield on Saturday.
Fontiton has been the standout two-year-old in Melbourne since she made her racing debut with a dominant six lengths victory in the Inglis Banner (1000m) at Moonee Valley on Cox Plate Day and is set to go into the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) as a clear favourite.
The Turffontein filly overcame a poor start to record a narrow win over Haybah in the Group 3 Blue Diamond Fillies Preview (1000m) at Sandown on Australia Day and she strengthened her position on top of Blue Diamond Stakes betting with a professional win in the Group 2 Blue Diamond Fillies Prelude (1100m) at Caulfield on February 14.
Fontiton will be joined in the 2015 Blue Diamond Stakes by stablemate Thurlow, who defeated Haybah and Brooklyn to win the Group 3 Chairman’s Stakes (1000m) at Sandown on February 7.
Another horse that will defend an unbeaten record in the Blue Diamond Stakes is Mark Riley-trained Of The Brave.
Riley received a three year suspension for administering Gold For Kev a prohibited substance at Sandown on July 13, but he has appealed the decision and will still be the trainer of Of The Brave this weekend.
Of The Brave made his racing debut with a comfortable victory in the Listed Debutant Stakes (1000m) at Caulfield on October 11 and he proved that victory was no fluke when he took out the Group 3 Blue Diamond Prelude For Colts and Geldings (1100m), but finished in a significantly slower time than Fontiton over the same track and distance.
Pride Of Dubai is one of the most interesting runners in the 2015 Blue Diamond Stakes field and he earnt a place in the Group 1 event after connections paid the late entry fee of $55,000.
The Street Cry colt made his racing debut with an encouraging third behind Ottoman in the Place Multi Plate (1100m) at Rosehill Gardens on December 20 and he stormed home late to stamp himself as a Blue Diamond Stakes contender in the Blue Diamond Prelude.
Team Snowden are chasing their second straight win in the Blue Diamond Stakes after taking out the 2014 edition of the race with talented filly Earthquake, while still the head trainer for Darley.
Godolphin are also chasing their second straight win in the Blue Diamond Stakes and they have included both Sampeah and Bantam in the acceptances for the $1 million race this weekend.
Sampeah was another horse that hit the line strongly in the Blue Diamond Prelude and is sure to relish the step-up in trip to 1200 metres, while Bantam did not perform at his best in the same race, but previously took out the Adapt Australian Handicap (1000m) at Moonee Valley on November 29.
The Hayes and Dabernig team will also have multiple runners in the form of Claudia Jean, Air Apparent and Reemah, while Tony McEvoy has included both Stoker and Manhattan Blues in the field.
The 2015 Blue Diamond Stakes field is rounded out by Maribyrnong Plate winner Prompt Return, Gai Waterhouse-trained Flamboyant Lass, Blue Diamond Prelude runner-up Miss Gidget and talented Team Hawkes-trained filly Lake Geneva.