Brilliant filly Earthquake cemented favouritism for the Golden Slipper with a classy win in the Group 1 $1m Sportingbet Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield today.
Trainer Peter Snowden will now send Earthquake back to Sydney for the Group 1 $3.5m Tooheys New Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill on April 5 after she had to overcome a horror barrier to score a dominant win.
Snowden, who will be leaving the giant Darley operation in May, described Earthquake as something special as she kept her unbeaten record intact with her third win.
“It was a tremendous win. Damian got into a good spot, she travelled really well, once she balanced up she pricked her ears and went to the line, I said oh my God,” Snowden said.
“That was special.”
“She is just very special. I still think there is more there and exciting times ahead.”
Snowden admits that a start in the Golden Slipper was always the plan and now Earthquake will head back to Warwick Farm to prepare for the richest two year old race in the world.
“If she pulls up well she has had the perfect preparation for the Golden Slipper,” Snowden said.
Snowden is tipping that Earthquake could emulate the efforts of his champion two year old Sepoy who won the Blue Diamond Stakes and the Golden Slipper in 2011.
Damian Browne was able to get the Exceed And Excel filly over from her wide barrier and settle just behind the leaders.
The Gai Waterhouse trained Nayeli led the field into the straight by was quickly collared by Rubick who was then claimed by Earthquake ($2.90 favourite) who raced away with her ears pricked to score a one and half lengths win over the Mick Price trained pair of Jabali ($15) and Cornrow ($61).
The Gerald Ryan trained Rubick ($3.70) battled on for fourth after hitting the front at the top of the straight.