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Fully Fledged Wins NZ Gr1 Ford Diamond Stakes
Highview Stud's Australian-bred stallion Align (Night Shift-Super Trend, by Red Anchor) added a juvenile Gr1 triumph when his colt Fully Fledged (Align-Fledged, by Bluebird) gained the decision in a 3-way photo-finish to the NZ$200,000 Gr1 Ford Diamond Stakes (1200m) for 2YOs at Ellerslie. Fully Fledged (ridden by Leith Innes for trainer Murray Baker) scored by a long-neck from the filly Raid (Pins-Vanilla Sky, by O'Reilly) with a further short-neck to fellow filly Il Quello Veloce (Captain Rio-Nishaani, by Gold Brose). Fully Fledged (a NZ$38,000 yearling consigned by Curraghmore Stud at the 2007 NZ Bloodstock Carnival Sale) now has 2 wins & 1 placing from 5 starts; back on January 19 he had dashed 3-lengths clear of the field inside the final 300m of the Gr2 Wakefield Challenge Stakes (1200m) at Trentham, only to ruin his chances by suddenly careering into the inside running rail, bursting through it & ending up on the inside of the track.