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Flying Artie could challenge for favouritism in the Blue Diamond Stakes if he draws a good barrier.

The final field for Saturday’s Group One race at Caulfield will be known early on Tuesday with the barrier draw later in the morning.

Flying Artie has continued to firm since the announcement Damien Oliver would ride the colt in the $1.5 million race and is now a $3.50 chance behind his Mick Price-trained stablemate Extreme Choice at $2.60.

Oliver partnered both colts to victory at their latest outings at Caulfield with Extreme Choice winning the Chairman’s Stakes on February 6 and Flying Artie the Blue Diamond Prelude the following week.

Craig Newitt will ride Extreme Choice.

Oliver chose Flying Artie believing the son of Artie Schiller was well equipped to handle the step up to 1200 metres.

Samara Dancer ($7) and Concealer ($8) are the next two in betting for Melbourne’s premier two-year-old race after filling the quinella in the fillies division of the Prelude on February 13.

The Phillip Stokes-trained Samara Dancer bled from one nostril when successful at Caulfield and will undergo a 1000m gallop in front of South Australian stewards at Morphettville before being declared an acceptor for the race.

The Blue Diamond has a capacity field of 16 with four emergencies.

The Lindsay Park stable hopes to have four runners in the race with Valliano and Highland Beat safely in the field.

Zamzam sits 25th in the order of entry but is expected to make the field with a number of runners sitting above her not expected to accept.

Co-trainer David Hayes hopes Seaburge can sneak into the final line-up, but has a back-up plan, accepting with the colt for a race at Sandown on Wednesday.

 
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