'Baby' B Choice proving a real boomer
A potential-laden first-starter described as a 'spook' and a 'real baby' gave Brett Prebble the first leg of a double, on what was a mixed programme for the Australian.
Prebble scored on exciting debutante B Choice, followed that with victory on Bouncer for Caspar Fownes, but was left feeling flat when he was forced to sit up on well-fancied runners Supreme Winner and Eagle Regiment later in the day.
The impressive win of the David Hall-trained B Choice in race four over 1,200m came over an unsuitable distance for the free-striding type, in a race where nothing went to plan. 'He is still a big kid and it was nice to see because he is not a 1,200m horse,' Prebble said.
'He relaxes good and he has a good gait, but he is just very scared and new. A real baby.'
B Choice trialled last Tuesday in order to be able to wear blinkers and the Prebble said they make a world of difference to the flighty four-year-old.
There were nervous moments as the jockey was left posted wide with no cover from barrier seven, but as the day progressed it turned out that was the place to be.
'I just wanted to keep his action and keep him comfortable because he is such a big long horse. I didn't want to bustle and push him,' he said. 'Even once he hit the front he got a little lost. I opened him right up. I could have been easier but I wanted to teach him to be a racehorse.'
Such was the ease of B Choice's win, Prebble had a look down through his legs to see where his opposition was, which will make for an interesting photo on the owner's wall.
Hall actually picked the Private Purchase Griffin out of a Seymour barrier trial and paid credit to connections for backing his judgment and buying the son of little-known New Zealand sire Coats Choice.
Given his B Choice's issues, a first trip to the track should bring on substantial improvement.
'He is a bit green and a bit of a spook. Experience wise this will help him a lot,' Hall said.
'He's won by three and a half so he's shown he is a bit better than Class Four opposition. His trials looked OK but he's had a few wayward moments in his trackwork, so it was good to see him get it right.'
In the following race over 1,600m, Prebble again came down the 'fast lane' on backmarker Bouncer, a horse he called 'tough and honest'.
Later in the day Prebble rode even-money favourite Supreme Winner, who bled, and Eagle Regiment in the Class Two sprint and will have vet checks this morning.
'His action never felt right at all,' Prebble said