Two year old Press Statement could be a surprise runner in the Group 1 $600,000 BMW Australia J.J. Atkins (1600m) at Doomben on Saturday week if he can win again at Canterbury on Wednesday.
Press Statement scored at big odds on debut over 1100m in a Canterbury two year old race on April 29 and Waller has stepped him up to 1550m at his second race start.
The Hinchinbrook colt is a half brother to Pressday who won the 2010 version of the J.J. Atkins, the Group 1 $500,000 T.J. Smith (1600m) at Eagle Farm, the first of Waller two year old Group 1 wins.
“Pressday was my first Group I two-year-old winner and he also won on debut,” Waller told Racenet.
“This one (Press Statement) is a lovely loose horse and his best will still be at least six months away.”
In-form jockey Tye Angland was aboard Press Statement for his debut win and gets the ride again at Canterbury.
The way that the colt powered to the line to win last start indicates that the step up in distance will be in his favour and he is sure to be sent out a hot favourite in the eight horse field.
Waller already has one of the top chances for the J.J. Atkins in Counterattack who has been showing plenty of ability at his two runs during the Brisbane Winter Carnival.
Counterattack made up ground from the back when fourth to Blueberry Hill in the Group 2 $175,000 Bollinger Champagne Classic (1200m) at Doomben on May 9 and followed that up with a similar run when fourth again to Look To The Stars in the Group 2 $250,000 Mitavite Australia BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1350m) at Doomben last Saturday.
The Peter Moody trained Bassett is at the top of the market order at $6.50 for the J.J. Atkins at Ladbrokes.com.au after the Savabeel youngster scored an impressive first up win over 1100m at Caulfield on May 16.
Counterattack shares the second line of betting with the Liam Birchley trained Blueberry Hill at $8 with Look To The Stars marked at $9.