Lee Freedman says last-start Morphettville winner Spatha may have an edge on promising stablemate Baptism as the Hall of Fame trainer attempts to win his third Blue Sapphire Stakes at Caulfield.
Freedman said Baptism may turn out a superior galloper but on form it was hard to go past Spatha in Saturday’s Listed feature.
“Long-term Baptism maybe the better horse because she will get over a bit ground but on Saturday, Spatha, with a good draw and winning form probably has the edge on her,” Freedman said.
Spatha came from last to finish fourth in field of eight at Moonee Valley when making his debut on April 2 but was dominant at Morphettville winning by 5-1/4 lengths in 1:9.45 for 1200m.
“He only won in Adelaide last start but he did win easily and he did run time so he is worth a crack at this race,” Freedman said.
“He showed some improvement from the experience at Moonee Valley and if the Adelaide form holds up he certainly has got a big chance.”
Spatha is a Darley-bred Lonhro colt from the city-winning mare Swishes who is a half-sister to the well-performed Le Zagaletta, a winner of 14 races for Freedman including nine stakes races.
Freedman bought Redoute’s Choice filly Baptism for $300,000 and John Singleton’s Strawberry Hill Stud, as the breeder, has retained an interest.
Baptism was only beaten 1-1/2 lengths at her only start when fourth of five runners at Caulfield on March 19 but Freedman has since scratched her three times.
“She had some bad draws and funny tracks and we’ve got the feeling we are only going to get a couple of runs out of her as a two-year-old,’ Freedman said.
“We thought we might as well make it count and run her in a stakes race and see what she can do.”
Freedman said a six-week gap since her debut was not ideal but he was hoping for a good result, especially as she got so close last start to the winner Mosheen who ran second to Sepoy in the Golden Slipper Stakes.
“It is hard to know how two-year-olds will go when they have been in training a while and have five or six weeks between runs but she seems well in herself,” Freedman said.
“If she runs up to her first start and shows some improvement from that then she is certainly going to be in it.”
Freedman won the inaugural Blue Sapphire with Readyforcatherine in 2005 and last year was successful with Smokin’ Joey.