Victory in a stakes race is vital for any potential broodmare.
When trainer Grahame Begg was flicking through upcoming race programs some months ago he made a mental note of the Listed Galilee Series Final, a race for three-year-olds over 2400m at Caulfield on Saturday.
But it wasn’t until after Blue Jay Way finished second at Sandown on March 28 he remembered Saturday’s race.
Blue Jay Way is one of only three horses to have run at 2400m previously which Begg sees as a positive.
A winner over 2050m at Mornington in January, Blue Jay Way, who is by 2010 Melbourne Cup winner Americain, hs shown her trainer she wants more ground.
Finding suitable races for the filly had been difficult until the benchmark 64 race at Sandown in which Blue Jay Way finished second in her last start.
“I had been looking for a race to step her up into as we know she’s a 2400-metre plus horse,” Begg said.
“She’s still very raw in the way she races so I thought I’d throw her in the deep end against older, more experienced horses.”
Begg said the gamble at Sandown paid dividends although she was beaten six lengths.
“Owners can get a little bit frustrated when they breed these stayers as they still want to see something,” he said.
“So when she ran so well the other day I was going through the program and thought this race might suit, especially being black-type.”
Begg has a query whether the Caulfield track will Blue Jay Way but knows the filly will relish every bit of the 2400m.
Her performance on Saturday will determine whether she progresses to the VRC St Leger (2800m) at Flemington on Anzac Day.
“We’ll let Saturday tell us where we are at,” he said.
“It’s in the back of our minds and I think Flemington and 2800 metres will suit her.”
Blue Jay Way’s elder half-brother Honey Steel’s Gold, trained by Lindsay Park, ran third in the corresponding Saturday race in 2014 before running second to Order Of The Sun in the St Leger.
“Everything the mare’s had has gone all right over a trip,” Begg said.