LEE’S CHOSEN ONE CONTINUES THE HYPE

14
Dec

Neil Lee says you can never say never, but for the moment he and his part-owners are enjoying the ride with progressive four-year-old God Has Chosen.

It’s far too early to label God Has Chosen has a budding star, but if you take a line through trainer Lindsey Smith’s comments, his future is bright.

Smith, never one to really talk up and label his horses, couldn’t hide his admiration for God Has Chosen on Perth’s Tabradio a couple of weeks back.

Smith believes if the son of Playing God remains sound and continues his rate of improvement, he has the potential to scale to Group 1 heights in Perth next year.

God Has Chosen didn’t do anything to allay Smith’s opinion or the growing hype surrounding him with another impressive victory at Ascot last weekend.

Under Paul Harvey he settled near last, had the field covered by the turn, cruised to the lead in the straight and went to the line untouched for a soft win.

Lee said all the owners are getting a great thrill out of God Has Chosen and admitted it would be very hard to part with the promising gelding.

“You are always tempted and who knows, but we are having a lot of fun with him,” Lee told The Races WA.

“He’s only a four-year-old that has had the eight starts, so we are more than happy to plod along with him and have some fun.

“What we do know is that he is very progressive and doing everything right now.

“I’ve had some good horses before, but none who could reach Group 1 level, they are very hard to find.

“It’s not about the money for us, you can’t take it with you, it’s about the pleasure and he’s giving us that.

“It’s all going well at the moment and it’s pretty exciting.”

God Has Chosen extended his record to five wins and three placings from eight starts after Saturday’s Amelia Park Handicap (1500m).

Two of those victories and a second came under Lee’s guidance in Albany where he kicked off his career before being transferred to Smith’s operation at Karnup.

Lee said there are no regrets that God Has Chosen is now in the care of Smith.

“I was getting away from training and looking to do some travel before Covid hit,” Lee said.

“Lindsey showed a lot of interest in the horse and he has a great set up where he is.

“It’s a similar rural type set up like we have in Albany and with the beach nearby.

“I didn’t want him going to Ascot where it’s a bit of a concrete jungle.

“He gets very well looked after by all the staff where he is.

“He’s in very good hands.”

God Has Chosen’s success and quick progress has not come as a complete surprise to Lee, a trainer with over two decades of experience in Albany.

He said God Has Chosen displayed the right attributes from the beginning.

“My brother bred him and I broke him in and got him going,” Lee said.

“Away from the track he is just very cool and relaxed with great manners.

“He is almost the perfect horse.

“I think he will only get better over 1600, 1800m and 2000m.”

Lee said God Has Chosen could race again in a fortnight or go out and come back for the autumn.

Julio Santarelli