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Shotmaker on trial for Diamond in Prelude

Mick Price.
Trainer Mick Price is making a late Blue Diamond Stakes bid with unraced Shotmaker.

The Mick Price-trained Shotmaker will make a late bid for the Blue Diamond Stakes when the colt races for the first time in one of the Preludes at Caulfield.

Price has won the Group One Blue Diamond for two-year-olds twice in the past seven years, first with filly Samaready in 2012 before star colts Extreme Choice and stablemate Flying Artie ran the quinella in 2016.

Shotmaker is at $15 for the Blue Diamond on February 23 despite having not raced and he steps out in Saturday’s Blue Diamond Prelude (1100m) for colts and geldings on the back of a Werribee barrier trial win on January 22.

“He’s very much on trial for the Blue Diamond,” Price said.

“He’s probably not as brilliant as Flying Artie or Extreme Choice, they were very automatic sort of horses and wanted to run and get going and keep running.

“He’s hits the front and wants to stargaze a bit, this horse.

“He’s going to be a beautiful three-year-old but, anyway, I’m trying to do something with him as a two-year-old.

“I don’t think I’ve got too many runs in him this preparation but he’s a very, very promising colt.”

Shotmaker is by Caulfield Guineas winner Shooting To Win out of Maroon Bay who is a three-quarter sister to dual hemisphere Group One winner Merchant Navy.

Mark Zahra rode Shotmaker in the Werribee trial but has stuck with Ballarat Magic Millions Clockwise Classic winner Hawker Hurricane, who resumes on Saturday from a break for his second start.

Price has instead booked Damian Lane to ride Shotmaker and he rode the colt in trackwork at Caulfield on Tuesday.

Price was pleased with that work, while he said Shotmaker galloped “super” last Saturday morning with Zac Spain aboard.

“We sat him off one and he went bang,” Price said.

“He ran very good time the last furlong.

“It’s only trackwork I know.

“He has to be good enough under race day pressure.

“It’s a big ask, but he’s a lovely colt. I really like him.”

Price also has two debutantes in Saturday’s fillies Prelude, Fawwaza and Moneefa.

“They’re both really nice fillies, but whether they are up to it on Saturday I’m not sure,” Price said.

“We’ll see how we go.”

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