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Crystal Dreamer to make stakes race debut

Crystal Dreamer has built a good winning record and will now get his chance to add a black-type success at Caulfield in the Listed Bel Esprit Stakes.

A first-up victory in a 1000m open handicap at Caulfield earlier this month took Crystal Dreamer’s record to seven wins from 14 starts while he has only missed a top three finish three times.

Crystal Dreamer formed part of a winning double for the Mathew Ellerton and Simon Zahra stable at Caulfield on April 8 along with Sword Of Light.

Both horses run on the same program again with Sword Of Light favourite for Saturday’s VOBIS Gold Reef, while stablemate Whistle Baby is also considered among the leading chances in her event on the lucrative card.

Crystal Dreamer has the outside barrier in a field of 14 for the Bel Espirt (1100m), which Zahra admits isn’t ideal but he is hopeful he can overcome it.

“He won well the other day,” Zahra said.

“It’s not ideal when you are going up into that sort of grade to draw there, but he’s got good gate speed and there looks like there’s a lot of speed in it.

“He should be thereabouts on the speed somewhere, he’s going well and he’s improved from his run the other day.”

Sword Of Light handled the rise to 1600m last start and runs over the same distance in the $250,000 VOBIS Gold Reef.

“She’s a pretty tough sort of filly and ran through the line well the other day off a very good tempo,” Zahra said.

“We thought she might have been suspect at the mile, but definitely not.

“This time in she did look like she wanted a bit more ground and I thought it was a very good win the other day.”

Zahra said because she backed up a week after her second in the Bendigo Guineas (1400m) into the mile last start, the filly was fit and had just been kept ticking over for Saturday.

“She’s probably pretty well-placed,” Zahra said.

“That run doesn’t look like it’s taken much out of her, but sometimes race day is when you get the real idea. But she looks fantastic and it would be a nice race to win.”

Whistle Baby is on the second line of betting for the VOBIS Gold Distaff while the stable is waiting to see whether unraced two-year-old filly Vivendi gains a start in the VOBIS Sires as the first emergency.

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