Hanseatic among early Diamond favourites

By: Thursday 21 November 201

Merson Cooper Stakes winner Hanseatic is among the early favourites to give trainer Anthony Freedman and owners Godolphin consecutive Blue Diamond Stakes victories.

Hanseatic won last Saturday's Listed Merson Cooper at Sandown on debut and the TAB has installed the colt equal favourite at $11 in its first Blue Diamond market after first acceptances were taken this week.

The Lindsay Park-trained filly Aryaaf and the Peter and Paul Snowden-trained filly Dame Giselle share the top line of early betting.

Aryaaf won the Group Three Ottawa Stakes for two-year-old fillies on debut at Flemington on November 5 while Dame Giselle won the Golden Gift impressively in Sydney at her second start on November 9.

Dame Giselle is also early favourite for the Golden Slipper in March.

The $1.5 million Blue Diamond (1200m) is at Caulfield on February 22 and was won this year by Lyre.

A record 831 juveniles remain in contention for Victoria's premier race for two-year-olds after the first acceptance stage, up from 815 last year, with co-trainers Ciaron Maher and David Eustace having the most entries with 86.

Second declarations close on January 7.