A new 3 year old star may have been born on Saturday, as Rich Enuff blew his rivals away in the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude. Drawing the outside barrier and doing lots of work early, the colt showed an amazing turn of foot, shooting away in the straight to win by 2.5 lengths.
The race has produced another battler fairytale, with trainer Ken Keys admitting to his share of struggles in his early training career, but things might finally be turning around.
"You wouldn’t believe how tough we did it early with my wife and the kids, they did tough yards,” Keys said.
"It’s just a culmination of a lot of hard work by a lot of people and I’m excited for (Rich Enuff’s part-owner) Colin (Johnstone), who has backed me for a long time and put plenty in.
"To get something back at long last is just fabulous for everyone.”
Winning jockey Michael Rodd was also super impressed by the youngster.
"He began brilliantly but we had a lot of horses kicking up underneath us. I had to do a fair bit work to get there but what I really liked about him was that he completely switched off.
"He just quickens and finds four or five lengths very quickly and he holds it to the line so it’s quite scary what this horse can do.”
Rich Enuff has now shortened to $3.20 for the Caulfield Guineas in a fortnight, with Almalad and Looks Like The Cat (who was runner up in the Prelude) back on the second line of betting.
In the fillies race, Afleet Esprit made it back to back stakes wins in the Thousand Guineas Prelude, getting a gun ride from Damien Oliver and edging out Amicus, with Go Indy Go running on strongly for third.
Pre-race favourite Bring Me The Maid never came into it, finishing back in seventh.
Winning trainer David Hayes was pleased with the advances Afleet Esprit has made this prep, and is confident she will run out the 1600 metres of a Guineas.
"She’s got such a relaxed demeanour and has stepped up each time we’ve raised the bar,” Hayes said.
"She’s a filly that looks like she’ll run a good mile, even though she’s by Bel Esprit who’s more noted for sprinters," Hayes said.
Go Indy Go has shot into favouritism for the Thousand Guineas after the eye catching third, with the winner and pre-race favourite both close behind in betting.
Next weekend the carnival moves to Flemington for Turnball Stakes Day.