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McEvoy Mitchell RacingLatest Press On to the Blue Diamond

On to the Blue Diamond

By Matt Tillett


Trainer Tony McEvoy has diverted Game Keeper from a midweek race to the Group One Blue Diamond.

McEvoy has accepted the challenge to tackle Victoria’s premier two-year-old race with Game Keeper, instead of a midweek option at Sandown.

Game Keeper is one of 14 acceptors for Saturday’s Blue Diamond Stakes at Caulfield and will be ridden by Barend Vorster from barrier one.

Originally from South Africa, Vorster is moving to Australia to become McEvoy’s South Australian stable rider after spending 16 years in Singapore.

With regular rider Luke Currie committed to the Anthony Freedman-trained Lyre, McEvoy said Vorster would fly in to ride Game Keeper on Saturday before returning to Singapore while he waits on his visa.

“I’ve got a lot of time for Game Keeper,” McEvoy said.

“He was a certainty beaten at his first start, ran okay at his second and then came out and won very well at his third start. He’s a pretty good colt and will probably be better off in the Sires’ over 1400 metres, but he’s not the worst horse in this race, I can tell you.”

As a son of Fastnet Rock, a top three finish in the Blue Diamond would see Game Keeper’s value as a stallion prospect increase dramatically, but the group of enthusiastic owners are just excited to have a runner in the big race.

Long term McEvoy Mitchell Racing owner Simon George is excited about having a Blue Diamond starter.

“A couple of hours ago we assumed we were no chance of getting a run, but now we are all booking flights to Melbourne.

“I think the odds of 100/1 are ridiculous, but we are just so excited to be in the big race”.

First-time McEvoy Mitchell Racing owner Scott Middleton can’t wait for Saturday.

“Our syndicate bought into this colt just a few months ago, we can’t believe this is really happening.

“We’re all based in Adelaide but can’t wait to get over to Caulfield, it’s like a dream-come-true”.

Enthusiastic owner Patrick Donovan will be having his second runner in the feature two-year-old.

“I really can’t wait,” Donovan said.

“I had a runner in the Blue Diamond about eight years ago and he finished 4th, hopefully Game Keeper can beat that this year.”

Game Keeper is quoted as a $91 chance with most bookies, so it really would be an improbable result if he were to salute on Saturday but as we saw with Manuel in the C.F Orr ten days ago, even ‘Not Likely’ results (quote Herald Sun) do occasionally happen.