Two of the premier contenders for Saturday’s Group 1 $1.5million Victoria Derby have been ruled out today.
Tomorrow the final acceptors for the Flemington Derby Day feature are announced, but AAMI Vase winner Hanks and West Australian runner Bridgestone will not be among them.
The Peter Moody-trained Hanks, coming off a sensational win at Moonee Valley last Saturday, will now be spelled. The gifted three-year-old needs time to rest and recuperate after his tough victory as Moody considers the large galloper still quite immature. He will be aimed at the AJC Derby in the autumn.
Bridgestone will also miss the race, the promising three-year-old due to be spelled after contracting a respiratory infection.
Mark Kavanagh’s Shamoline Warrior is currently the short priced favourite for the Victoria Derby, firming to $2.80 following the withdrawal of Hanks and Bridgestone. The bay colt has lead the betting markets after his brilliant Group 3 Norman Robinson Stakes (2000m) win at Caulfield on Saturday 17.
Geelong Classic placegetter Rockferry is not far behind at $5 with the Spring Champion Stakes victor Monaco Consul (NZ) third favourite at $6; both presenting a major threat.