A classy field of 16 runners plus one emergency has been confirmed for this weekend’s featured Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington Racecourse, highlighted by the inclusion of several of the Spring Racing Carnival’s standout three-year-old stayers.
Charging home to secure a maiden victory at the highest level of Australian racing and early favouritism for this weekend’s feature in the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) last time out on October 11th, trainer Gai Waterhouse has confirmed Hampton Court in the 2014 Victoria Derby final field.
Claiming three wins and a further two minor places from his nine competitive starts so far, Hampton Court debuted to racing with a strong run for second behind Brazen Beau in a minor over 1100m on February 5th, and while failing to beat a single runner home in the Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes (11000m) on March 1st, responded in the best way possible when securing a maiden race win in the Tal Beaumont 2.y.o Handicap (1400m) on March 19th; returning to the paddock after a disappointing performance in the Group 3 The Schweppervescence (1400m).
Steadily building to the task over five starts this time in, the Redoute’s Choice colt finished third in the TAB Early Quaddie BM70 (1400m) and fourth in the Group 3 Newcastle Spring Stakes (1600m) before undoubtedly hitting peak condition in winning the Listed Dulcify Quality (1600m) and Spring Champion Stakes most recently.
Stamping his claims as a serious black type contender when comfortably winning the Group 2 Moonee Valley Vase (2040m) last weekend, trainer Mick Price has confirmed Moonovermanhattan in the Victoria Derby final field.
Stamping his claims as one to watch when taking out the Group 3 Darley National Stakes (1200m) on debut in May, Moonovermanhattan beat just one runner home in the Group 3 McNeil Stakes (1200m) first-up on August 30th before quickly returning to form when running a credible fourth in the Listed Living Legends Stakes (1400m) on September 13th.
Running second to Almalad in the Group 2 Bill Stutt Stakes (1600m) before a strong performance for seventh in the featured Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) in his only other start prior to the Moonee Valley Vase, both Price and jockey Craig Newitt have been thrilled with the progression of the Manhattan Rain colt this week and are brimming with confidence ahead of the Victoria Derby.
Returning to racing in smart form this season, trainer Mark Kavanagh is offered a great chance of 2014 Victoria Derby success via Magicool this weekend.
Claiming two wins and one minor from his five competitive starts so far, Magicool ran fifth in a minor over 1200m on June 21st before immediately returning to the paddock for a brief spell.
Winning the Height Insurance Agencies Maiden (1200m) first-up on September 11th, the son of Fastnet Rock finished a close second in the Ritchie Brothers Auctions 3.y.o (1435m) on September 26th before returning to the winner’s circle in the Listed U.C.I Stakes (1800m) on October 4th; running on for a competitive fifth in the Caulfield Classic (2000m) last time out.
Carrying winning form into the 2014 Victoria Derby, Nozomi is sure to cause a serious threat in the Group 1 feature on Saturday, particularly if allocated a favourable barrier.
Claiming two wins and one minor places from his seven competitive starts so far, the Street Cry colt finished third in a minor over 1717m on September 18th before claiming back-to-back victories in the Sportsbet Fixed Odds Maiden (1875m) and Listed Geelong Classic (2200m) most recently.
The barrier draw for the 2014 Victoria Derby is scheduled to be completed at 12:30pm AEST on Wednesday.
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2014 Victoria Derby Final Field
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||2710×83411||HAMPTON COURT||Gai Waterhouse||Kerrin McEvoy||0||55.5kg||104|
|2||1×04271||MOONOVERMANHATTAN||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||0||55.5kg||92|
|3||13×5575180||PRENTICE||Simon Foster||Luke Nolen||0||55.5kg||73|
|4||23183||FIREHOUSE ROCK||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Nicholas Hall||0||55.5kg||74|
|5||5×1215||MAGICOOL||Mark Kavanagh||Glen Boss||0||55.5kg||78|
|6||3×15723010||LOTION||David Hayes & Tom Dabernig||Michael Walker||0||55.5kg||71|
|7||48×65311||NOZOMI||Anthony Freedman||Dwayne Dunn||0||55.5kg||71|
|8||623×6144||LIGHT UP MANHATTAN||Ciaron Maher||Mark Zahra||0||55.5kg||68|
|9||3×2117||BONDEIGER||Danny O’Brien||James Winks||0||55.5kg||70|
|10||x552x41024||ROYAL STANDING||Brent Stanley||Damian Lane||0||55.5kg||70|
|11||5222||ATMOSPHERE (NZ)||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Joao Moreira||0||55.5kg||78|
|12||743×451||GOULDIAN||John O’Shea||James McDonald||0||55.5kg||66|
|13||732242||PREFERMENT (NZ)||Chris Waller||Damien Oliver||0||55.5kg||68|
|14||0798×427||CUBAN FIGHTER||Robbie Laing||–||0||55.5kg||61|
|15||158||SAN PADRE||Michael Kent||Tommy Berry||0||55.5kg||63|
|16||8×839024||THE MIGHTY JROD (NZ)||Robbie Laing||–||0||55.5kg||62|
|17e||5×8307||VERREAUX (NZ)||Mark Kavanagh||Blake Shinn||0||55.5kg||58|