Prairie Fire has clinched a Blue Diamond berth with victory in a Listed race at Flemington.
The Mick Price-trained colt is raced by Sun Stud and was having his second start in Saturday’s The Asian Executive Stakes (1100m) for two-year-olds in a bid to secure a Blue Diamond start.
Khulaasa ($4.40) raced to the front on the rail approaching the 300m before the equal favourite Prairie Fire ($4.40) let down strongly down the outside of the pack.
He defeated Khulaasa by a length with another 3-3/4-lengths to third placed Invincible Lad ($12).
Prairie Fire has firmed from $51 to $9 for next Saturday’s Group One Blue Diamond (1200m).
“I spoke to Sun Stud before today and they definitely want to run him in the Blue Diamond which is why they ran him here,” Price said.
“So he really only had to run in the first three today then have a soft week.
“It will give them a runner in the Blue Diamond and good luck to them.”
Price is hoping Seabrook, a luckless third placegetter in the Blue Diamond Fillies Prelude on debut last week, and High Ratio can also make the Blue Diamond field when acceptances are taken on Tuesday.
“Seabrook is thriving so I’m crossing fingers that she can get a run,” Price said.
Prairie Fire was third in Ennis Hill in the Chairman’s Stakes on debut and showed the benefit of some race experience and the addition on blinkers on Saturday.
“He raced like a professional whereas two weeks ago he raced like he had no idea and I thought he fell into third place under sufferance,” Price said.
“He’s improved but I haven’t galloped him too hard even though he galloped in blinkers.
“He has galloped reasonably but that was a bit of a surprise how well he went then and how professionally he hit the line.”