Blue Army wins Group 2 Sandown Guineas

Having vacated their Caulfield stable during the week, the Mick Price and Michael Kent Jr team returned to claim the Sandown Guineas on Saturday.

The victory of Blue Army in the Group 2 race over 1600m for three-year-olds was the first for the stable from their new base at Cranbourne.

Caulfield has officially closed the door to training and will become a racecourse only with plans to develop a second turf track.

Saturday’s meeting, featuring the Sandown Guineas, was moved from its traditional date of a week after the conclusion of the Melbourne Cup Carnival to the end of November while it also marked the return of crowds to Melbourne racetracks.

Price last won the Sandown Guineas in 2007 with Schilling and Saturday’s win with Blue Army was his first with Kent Jr who joined him in a partnership in March last year.

Ridden by Damian Lane, Blue Army ($18) scored a half-length win from Blazehero ($20) with the $3 favourite Festival Dancer a length away third.

Blue Army entered Saturday’s race off a win in a 1400m maiden at Warrnambool earlier in November.

“He’s our first winner from our new Cranbourne stable and he’s a beautiful colt,” Kent Jr said.

“It is a massive result because the owner has flown all the way from Singapore for the day and to get a win with him here is huge.

“We always thought he’d be better in the autumn, to be honest. We didn’t know if he would be going out after this run but we set him for the race.

“He was down at our Warrnambool stable initially and now at Cranbourne, so it worked out well.”

Lane said Blue Army had been well prepared and educated and had come on from his first-up win.

“I was able to use him a little bit early, put him in a spot, switch him off,” Lane said.

“Everything you want from a horse he did for me, and I knew I was the winner a long way out.”

Blue Army wins the G2 Sandown Guineas at start #3 for @MickPriceRacing and @MichaelRhysKent. @MelbRacingClub @RacingVictoria

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