Sacred Choice firms in Chipping Norton betting

By: Mark Mazzaglia
March 8th, 2012

Wet track specialist Sacred Choice has firmed dramatically in the betting for the Group 1 $350,000 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Warwick Farm on Saturday.

The Joe Pride trained mare will get conditions to suit with parts of Warwick Farm under water this morning as a result of the continuous heavy downpours that Sydney and most of New South Wales have received over the past week.

With Warwick Farm being rated a heavy 10 today, Scared Choice has firmed from an opening price of $17 to be $8.50, with Pinker Pinker still the ruling favourite at $2.70 just ahead of the Chris Waller trainer Shoot Out at $3.

The Choisir mare has outstanding form on heavy tracks including wins in the Group 1 $500,000 Myer Classic at Flemington and the Group 1 $2m Emirates Doncaster Mile at Randwick both over 1600m.

Jay Ford is back on Sacred Choice after having ridden her first up when seventh to Rain Affair over an unsuitable 1200m in the Group 2 $200,000 TAB Sportsbet Expressway Stakes at Rosehill on February 11.

The six year old was again out sprinted when tenth to Rain Affair in the 1400m Group 2 $250,000 Hako Australia Apollo Stakes at Rosehill two weeks ago but Saturday she will be getting all the conditions to suit.

“I’m quite happy it is wet, I’m just hoping it’s not too wet that we don’t race,” Ford said.

“Sacred Choice is third-up, she is up to the mile and she gets a wet track so there’s a lot to like about the race for her on Saturday.”

“Her form on heavy tracks is fantastic.  I’ve always ridden her first-up or early in her preparation. Saturday is the first time I’ll hop on her back and get to the races thinking she’s in with a good shot.”

Pride has also opted to put the blinkers back on the mare and this is a sign that he thinks she is ready to produce her best.

Ford will also team up with Pride in the Group 3 $125,000 Liverpool City Cup (1300m) with Neeson who is second favourite at $4.60 behind the Gary Portelli trained Somepin Anypin at $2.40.

The Mossman five year old has fair wet track form and is fitter for one run from a spell when second to No Evidence Needed in the Group 3 $125,000 Mad Mex Southern Cross Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on February 25.

“He ran well the other day first-up and he improves second-up and likes the wet,” Ford said.

“He’s another one that’s got good wet form and it looks a very nice race for him.”

“I think he’s probably my best ride on Saturday.”

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