Balf makes the right choice

Sunday Mail - - SPORT - LIN­COLN MOORE

A QUEENS­LAND win­ter looks to have rein­vig­o­rated qual­ity gal­loper Balf’s Choice, who bounce backed to win­ning form at Morphettville yes­ter­day for the first time since last year’s Sey­mour Cup.

The Ryan Bal­four-trained geld­ing put the writ­ing on the wall with a slash­ing re­turn to rac­ing be­hind Lord Sun­downer a fort­night ago.

His class was telling yes­ter­day in up­stag­ing race favourite Hussy­bay.

“I spelled him up in Queens­land. I was lucky the own­ers backed that de­ci­sion – it was some­thing Dad and I used to talk about,’’ Bal­four said.

“He pre-trained up there with Billy Healey, who is a young trainer go­ing places. The horse has come back to us in great order.’’

Balf’s Choice was last in the small field of four be­fore com­ing around horses and hold­ing off Hussy­bay, who took an in­side run in the straight but couldn’t match the win­ner.

Bal­four said there were no big plans for the dual coun­try cup win­ner.

“I think we’ll keep him around the same trip,’’ Bal­four said. “Even though he’s show­ing signs he might want a bit fur­ther, we’ll just wait and see how that plays out.

“His rat­ing is go­ing to make him pretty hard to place now, so his next out­ing might be over the bor­der. If he con­tin­ues to look like he’ll want fur­ther, it’s not a bad time of year to be do­ing so.’’

Bal­four said the Birth­day Cup and Lord Reims could be op­tions if Balf’s Choice, who won his maiden over 2000m at Mil­dura in 2016, con­tin­ued to give the im­pres­sion he was look­ing for ground.

The geld­ing named in hon­our of Bal­four’s late fa­ther, David, was rid­den by Vic­to­rian jockey Cory Par­ish.

Bal­four said the 2017 Caulfield Cup-win­ning rider’s abil­ity to use the whip in his left hand suited Balf’s Choice.

“I thought Cory would be ideal for him. To have a sweep­ing left-hand whip ac­tion is some­thing that def­i­nitely works with this horse,’’ he said.

Pic­ture: ATKINS

HE’S BACK: Cory Par­ish’s left-hand whip ac­tion gets Balf's Choice home.

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