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Helmet Captures Caulfield Guineas

Trainer Peter Snowden continues to flourish in the 2011 racing season, with his 3 year old colt Helmet winning the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas in brilliant fashion on Saturday.

Fresh off a Group 1 Manikato Stakes win with Sepoy, Snowden saw his "number 2 horse" stand up as a superstar in his own right, holding out the gallant Manawanui in the $1 million Guineas. Starting as the $2.20 favourite, Helmet was forced to use up a tonne of energy in the early going, coming across from a wide gate to take the lead.

He set a cracking pace throughout the race and led by three lengths at the 800 metre mark, only to be challenged by Manawanui in the straight. After such a tough run, Helmet had every excuse to be run down, but he bravely fought it out, and held on to claim a remarkable victory.

It was his sixth win in only 9 starts, including three Group 1s. His three misses were all still minor placings, which is only further credit to his consistency. The Caulfield Guineas was run about 6 lengths faster than the Group 1 Toorak Handicap a race earlier, and made Helmet's front running effort all the more impessive.

"When he switches on and does everything right he's got breathtaking ability," jockey Kerrin McEvoy said of his mount. "He's done that in fourth gear, so to speak".

Helmet now goes to the Cox Plate, for which he is now the $3.50 favourite.

Anthony Cummings boom 3 year old Smart Missile has dropped to $34 in betting, after a sub par performance in the Guineas where he failed to run on, finishing fifth.

Last year's Caulfield Cup winner Descarado, and in form runner King's Rose are also high up the Cox betting after both had strong runs on Saturday in their respective Group 1 events.