Two expensive Fastnet Rock colts going head to head to the line at Wangaratta on Sunday with seven lengths back to the third horse made this a maiden event well above average.
Victory in the 1170 metre maiden went to the Peter Moody trained Armada (3c Fastnet Rock x Procrastinate, by Jade Hunter) by half a head from the Mark Kavanagh trained White Hunter (3c Fastnet Rock x Earthen Cool, by Real Quiet), but both colts will be worth following out of the race and both are entered for the Group I MRC Caulfield Guineas.
Luke Nolen rode the winner and is expecting better things to come.
“He’s a cracking colt and we’ve got a lot of time for him,” Nolen said.
“He’s continuing to furnish. We probably got two bonus runs out of him as a two-year-old.
“Even beyond this prep, from the autumn next year I reckon he’ll really come into his own. Hopefully we can knock off a couple of nice races between here and there.”
Armada was resuming from a spell after finishing third on debut at Caulfield to Pressing and then fifth to the same colt in a Listed race, so has obviously returned a stronger competitor.
A $350,000 Inglis Easter purchase for his trainer from the Coolmore draft, Armada runs for a syndicate of owners headed by his breeder John Camilleri of Fairway Thoroughbreds.
Armada is a three-quarter brother to multiple Group I winner Laisserfaire, Group III winner A Time for Julia and stakes-winners Time Thief and Foreplay, his dam Procrastinate an exceptional producer that has left 10 winners from 13 runners.
Now 24, Procrastinate is due to foal one more time to So You Think.