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Formality to press her Blue Diamond claims

Impressive debut winner Formality puts her Blue Diamond credentials on the line in an important lead-up at Caulfield.

A debut winner at Werribee last month, Formality is the $3 favourite to take out the Chairman’s Stakes (1000m) on Saturday and a $17 chance in the Blue Diamond Stakes at Caulfield on February 25.

Lindsay Park co-trainer Tom Dabernig says Formality has shown the stable she is up to Saturday’s company in which she takes on eight rivals, two colts and six fillies.

Formality won a two-year-old fillies maiden at Werribee on January 5 by a widening 4-1/4 lengths.

“Often you can get a bit of a rude shock with the difference between races at this time of year,” Dabernig said.

“But we’ll certainly get an idea of where she is at on Saturday.

“She’s a horse that is bred to get a little bit of a trip but she’s built more like a sprinter.”

Formality is a daughter of Singapore triple crown winner Jolie’s Shinju who was successful in the 2000m Singapore Derby and was placed in weight-for-age company at Moonee Valley during the spring of 2009 before her campaign went awry.

Dabernig says Formality has continued to work well in the lead-up to Saturday’s race but is not fully wound up with her grand final still three weeks away.

“She’ll want to be pretty near her top to be winning or running a close second to know where we are at,” Dabernig said.

“But I think she’s where we want her to be.”

Lindsay Park also has Feng Shu in Saturday’s race.

Feng Shu had two runs during the spring for a debut fourth behind Wait For No One at Caulfield and a seventh to Azazel at Moonee Valley.

Dabernig said the market had it right with the two Lindsay Park runners with Feng Shu an $18 chance.

“Often they come back from a break and improve a length or two, but he needs to,” Dabernig said.

Mark Zahra, who rode Formality at Werribee, rides Feng Shu, owned by Sun Bloodstock, on Saturday.

Craig Williams takes over on Formality.

“Mark couldn’t make the weight so he’s on Feng Shu as he’s retained to ride for them a bit,” Dabernig said.

“Craig’s got a number of choices in the Blue Diamond and this may be another one.”

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