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Trainer Peter Gelagotis has celebrated his first ever Group win after Mourinho won the 2011 Tasmanian Derby (2,200m) on Saturday February 5, 2011.
Mourinho began early favourite with bookmakers such as Luxbet, but settled into third place in the betting behind Heez Born Lucky and $3.80 favourite Ludka.
Mourinho won the 2011 Tasmanian Derby on Tattersall Park‘s dead-rated track with Victorian jockey Anthony Darmanin on board.
Darmanin settled his horse in fifth position after a slow first mile tempo set by Stella Rose and favourite Ludka.
Mourinho then proved he was much too strong for the rest of the field when he accelerated at the home turn and bolted to an easy lead in the final straight.
The three-year-old gelding won the Group 3 Tasmanian Derby by nearly three lengths ahead of Heez Born lucky and third place getter Jay Bee’s Gee Gee.
Mourinho’s trainer, Peter Gelagotis, found it hard to hide his excitement after his horse beat the classy field to win the $150,000 prize money offered.
“This is my biggest win in racing and my first Group race,” Mr Gelagotis said.
“His win at Moonee Valley two starts back was very good and it didn’t surprise me to see him win the way he did.”
Peter Gelagotis was also quick to speak of his high hopes for the winning gelding’s future.
“I will be sending him straight to the paddock for a spell and he will be back for the spring in Melbourne,” he said.
“He will make a great Country Cups horse and he may even win a good race during the Spring Carnival in Melbourne.”
Mourinho has now won three races from six starts and has only failed to place twice, including last start where he finished last at Flemington.
Race favourite Ludka proved that he was unable to stay the full 2,200 metres when he weakened badly to finish seventh.
Ludka’s jockey Steven King felt that the horse’s performance may be a sign it is in need of a spell.
“She gave me a good ride but was gone a long way from home,” said Mr King.
“I’m not certain but she may have had enough this preparation.”
Runner up Heez Born Lucky had a difficult run and did well to finish second after coming from last down the home straight.
Jockey Rhys McLeod commented that he felt his horse may have won the race had they drawn a decent barrier, as opposed to their starting barrier of nine.
Tiger Won’t Tell’s jockey Brendon McCoull felt that his horse did well to run fourth in the race considering the circumstances.
“We struck interference at the 500m and we got smashed, he ran well considering,” Mr McCoull said.
Race winner Mourinho was purchased for $36,000 at the 2009 Inglis Classic Yearling sale and has now earned more than $150,000 in prize money.
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2011 Tasmanian Derby Results
|HEEZ BORN LUCKY(NZ)||RHYS MCLEOD||2nd||$4|
|JAY BEE’S GEE GEE||KELVIN SANDERSON||3rd||$58.70|
|TIGER WON’T TELL||BRENDON MCCOULL||4th||$5.20|
|STELLA’S ROSE||DEAN YENDALL||5th||$14.60|
|ROSE OF SCOTLAND||DARREN GAUCI||6th||$6.80|
|TREE BANDIT||MICHAEL GUTHRIE||8th||$80.50|
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