Extreme Warrior returned with a bang on Saturday.
Now he is ready to take the next step to become a star colt.
Warrior is ready for Group 1 glory
A lame itchy throat
It is hard to miss him.
A big, shiny three-year-old colt who brandies the Rosemont Stud silks emblazoned in red.
After starting a $3.5 favourite in the Coolmore Stud Stakes last year and pulling up in defeat, Extreme Warrior was sent straight to the paddock.
His two returning jump outs looked brilliant and he was set for a massive autumn campaign.
But a darn throat infection curtailed his dreams of a path towards the TJ Smith sprint in Sydney.
A round of antibiotics and medicine were due to deal with his throat issue, but it ruined his whole autumn campaign.
All the residual fitness he had built up was wasted away in the space of a week.
It was left to the horsemanship of Mick Price & Michael Kent Jnr. to deal with getting him back to the races.
Seven weeks after his February 14th jump out saw him return with an 800-metre jog around Cranbourne April 4.
Then, a nomination in the Listed Bel Esprit Stakes.
There was no mucking around the stable and connections.
Jamie Kah was booked.
It was only right for a star jockey to be booked a for potential star colt who we are yet to really scratch the bottom of the surface with.
A picture of health melts away
His coat glistened in the mounting yard.
The sun shined on him and he looked to explode.
Still a little fat around the edges, but understandable given he was resuming from time away.
But the danger signs of him not being at the races for a while began behind the barriers.
The sweat. The pressure. The angst of being loaded away.
Extreme Warrior looked like he might have won his race prior to the jump.
The market had him marked a hot favourite, but there was still some resistance for him.
The Warrior spirit shines
As the light flashed away and the final horse was loaded, all was in readiness.
Bang, ping, away.
Kah scooted him out of the gates and put him straight into the race after jumping like a horse who had never been away from the course.
Sitting outside the lead took all luck out of the equation.
The pair put the race to bed with a beautiful explosion of speed from the 400 metres to the 200 metres.
He might have been running on empty in the last 100 metres, but his will to win, his will to deliver and his will to be in front shone through.
In the twilight sun of Caulfield, he strode away to win with just under a length to spare.
Group 1 favourite… again
The resuming win at Caulfield saw markets react.
With the aim being The Goodwood in May, he rocketed into $4.8 favouritism and deservedly so.
There is sure to be a lot more support for him heading into the run.
Touch wood for The Goodwood.
Good health, an uninterrupted run at it and the general improvement he will get from the run, surely makes him insanely hard to beat in the feature Adelaide sprint.