A snap decision by Hugh Bowman has delivered Press Statement an all-the-way win in the Caulfield Guineas.
The Sydney-based rider was in a subdued mood following the fourth placing of Pasadena Girl in the preceding race, the Thousand Guineas.
Bowman hesitated at the start before finishing fourth behind Stay With Me.
But it was a different story aboard Press Statement with the jockey deciding to go forward after the three-year-old began so well.
“I made a spontaneous decision when the horse jumped and I’ve got the confidence from the owners and the trainer to make those decisions,” Bowman said.
Backed from $2.80 to run the $2.50 favourite, Press Statement scored by 1-3/4 lengths from Lizard Island ($19) with Ready For Victory ($11) a neck away third.
“When I was sitting in those gates I was indecisive for a moment on Pasadena Girl,” Bowman said.
“I didn’t want to be last on her and I didn’t want to lead and I ended up covering ground.
“She acquitted herself very well but I had to go inside, look at myself in the mirror and say `get your act together son’.”
The pep talk worked and despite Press Statement doing early work up the Caulfield hill he was able to find the lead comfortably.
He applied the pressure before the turn, drifting to the middle of the track in the straight.
Even though Press Statement is now a dual Group One winner, Bowman said Press Statement was still a work in progress.
“I’ve only had a small bit to do with him, but to me he’s still undeveloped,” Bowman said.
“I shudder to think what he might grow into.”
Chris Waller collected his first Caulfield Guineas with Press Statement and his second Group One for the afternoon after Vanbrugh took out the Spring Champion Stakes in Sydney.
He said he would see how Press Statement came through his success before contemplating a Cox Plate start.
Press Statement firmed from $15 to $9 in Cox Plate betting.
“He can go home to Flemington and eat up his feed tonight and then we’ll worry about tomorrow, tomorrow,” Waller said.
“I’ve got to see if he can beat a few others in the stable first and Criterion after today’s good win.
“He hasn’t had a spell as such and it would be a pretty big ask to go that far.
“Does he need to, does it change his value? I don’t think so.”