Ennis Hill tees up Blue Diamond run

03 February 2018 06:51:06 EST

Ennis Hill has raced her way into the Blue Diamond Stakes with her win in the Group 3 Chairman's Stakes (1000m) at Caulfield.

The daughter of Fastnet Rock struggled first-up at Caulfield in December when only managing fourth place, but bounced back in fine style this afternoon in the Chairman's Stakes.

Ennis Hill jumped quickly with the blinkers on for the first time for jockey Stephen Baster and was never headed, comfortably seeing off her rivals.

Godolphin colt Encryption finished second, 1¼ lengths ahead of the Mick Price-trained first starter Prairie Fire, who was third.

"At home, early days, we thought she was our best but then Long Leaf and a couple of others came along but she's up there with them," trainer Ben Hayes said.

"With the blinkers on, she really woke up and never looked like losing. I think it was race experience as well (that helped), she broke better (from the gates) and they went quick too.

"She did it at both ends, which is always a good sign."

While the Chairman's Stakes victory was an important win for the filly, the $90,000 winner's cheque all but guaranteed Ennis Hill a Blue Diamond Stakes berth.

Co-trainer David Hayes said Ennis Hill, now rated a 8/1 chance, would go into the Blue Diamond Stakes on 24th February without another run.

"She's super exciting and it's just great to have another live chance in the Blue Diamond," he added.

Long Leaf is trading at 6/1 for the Blue Diamond while Chairman's Stakes runner-up Encryption can be backed at 1/1.

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