Three-year-old Extreme Choice returned to the races with a most impressive victory in the 2016 Moir Stakes at Moonee Valley tonight.
Jockey Craig Newitt and connections elected to settle Extreme Choice towards the tail of the field in the early stages of the race and that decision paid dividends when he flew home late to upstage the likes of Buffering and Chautauqua.
Newitt has now recorded two Group 1 victories on Extreme Choice and he was delighted that the Not A Single Doubt colt had shown just how good he really is in the Moir Stakes.
“He is a beauty,” Newitt said.
“He relaxed beautifully, he travelled good and I heard the grey horse starting to make his run at the 500.
“We went at the same time and the further we went the further we were getting away.
“He picked up really good, he quickened off the bend and I said all along that he has come back a better horse this time in.
“It is just great to get a win like that with him.”
Trainer Mick Price admitted after the race that he initially planned to scratch Extreme Choice from the Moir Stakes after he drew the inside barrier, but he thought that the colt was deserving of an opportunity in a Group 1 event first-up.
Price said that Extreme Choice is now likely to head to the Group 3 Blue Sapphire Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on October 12 before he chases another Group 1 victory in the Coolmore Stud Stakes on Victoria Derby Day.
“It is a very tough race, there was good speed on and some fantastic horses in there and he beat them,” Price said.
“He is a stud colt and that is what this race is all about.
“Every race is different and had we drawn barrier four we probably would have ridden him off the speed, but not been back as such.
“Every race you have to have you thinking cap on and do your best with what you have got.
“Yesterday morning I wasn’t running from nine out of nine, but I had a think and spoke to a few people.
“I spoke to Craig and had a look at the speed maps and in the end we just thought that it was a Group 1 and we didn’t really want to take a backward step on him.
“He is a good colt and he proved tonight that he is a real stud colt.
“Chautauqua was off the bridle before we were behind us.
“The Coolmore is a bit of a stallion-making race and it is a month between runs.
“I think that we are running in the Blue Sapphire as a run into the Coolmore.”
Chautauqua was off the bridle and under a pressure a long way from home and he was never able to get into the finish, while Wild Rain and Heatherly toughed it out to finish in the placings.