With short-priced favourite Shamoline warrior scratched from today’s Group 1 $1.5million Victoria Derby, we look at the top three contenders now set for Derby success. Odds current at time of publication only.
Current Odds: $3.80
Jockey: Hugh Bowman
Trainer: Danny O’Brien
Breeding: by PENTIRE (GB) from EXCELO (NZ)
Prizemoney: $16 075
Currently in a heated battle for favouritism in today’s Derby with Monaco Consul, following the scratching of Shamoline Warrior, the lightly-raced Rockferry has gained an incredible amount of support from the punters in the last few days. The colt, prepared by premier trainer Danny O’Brien and ridden by in-form hoop Hugh Bowman, will cause a massive upset with bookies if he does see success today, with many punters having secured much longer odds on the runner prior to this morning’s shock scratching. Although inexperienced and untested, he is still considered a real up and comer by those in know, and is the right type of runner to take out the Derby.
Current Odds: $4.00
Jockey: Corey Brown
Trainer: Michael Moroney
Breeding: by HIGH CHAPARREL (IRE) from ARGANTE (NZ)
Prizemoney: $191 355
This Michael Moroney-trained bay colt had an impressive win last start in the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes, where he defeated Rockferry by an easy 16 lengths. Doubt has arisen, however, over Monaco Consul’s readiness for the 2500m Derby considering the Spring Champion Stakes was over four weeks ago and he hasn’t been run in another lead-up race since then. But the colt, coming from a strong New Zealand campaign jumped from 1600m to 2000m when he won the Champion Stakes, so connections (and the punters it seems) are confident he can do the same today and prove himself in the Derby’s staying distance. With the inside barrier, Corey Brown is likely to let Monaco Consul go forward early and the colt may even be the pacesetter this Derby. And with the track at Flemington rated a Dead 5 today, conditions should suit the budding runner as his win in the Champion Stakes was on heavy track conditions.
Current Odds: $7.00
Jockey: Damien Oliver
Trainer: John P Thompson
Breeding: by RED RANSOM (USA) from PALIA
Prizemoney: $426 510
Hugh Bowman, now set to mount the green favourite Rockferry in today’s Derby, originally turned down the mount on the more experienced and proven Onemorenomore, but will it come back to haunt him? The three-year-old has shown excellent form this preparation, finishing a brave second to the scratched favourite for the Derby Shamoline Warrior in the Group 3 Norman Robinson Stakes (2000m) a fortnight ago, a four length victory in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes and a solid third in the Group 1 George Main Stakes. But despite his impressive recent record, the colt’s maximum distance win has only been at 1600m and the Derby winner really needs to be a strong stayer. So his good form may give way to his inexperience in the longer distance, but still a good horse to back in the Place bets.