John McArdle’s Mornington raider Methuselah scored an upset win by a big margin in the Tasmanian Derby 2012 at Hobart on Sunday, rewarding their trainer’s two-year-plan and emerging as a genuine staying type to watch throughout the autumn.
The Savoire Vivre gelding went out as a $18.50 outsider in the betting for the $100,000 Listed Tasmanian Derby (2200m) despite the three-year-old’s impressive five length victory at Ararat over 2000m last-start on January 16.
Ridden by New Zealand-born hoop Jarrod Todd, Methuselah never looked threatened when leading all-the-way to put three lengths on the favourite Barysh Quest ($2.80) who finished second just a nose ahead of their third-placed stablemate, the fellow Gary White-trained Colonial Gold ($50.30) making for a juicy paying Tasmanian Derby Trifeca.
It was the culmination of a long-term assignment McArdle had set Methuselah on after securing them for $30,000 at the 2010 Magic Millions Tasmanian Select Yearling Sales.
“Ever since we bought him I’ve had the Tasmanian Derby in mind but it’s the way he’s gone this time in with two wins from his previous four starts and especially his win at Ararat confirmed it,” McArdle explained.
“It’s always a bit special winning a stakes race and this horse is a genuine stayer.
“He was given the perfect ride by Jarrod from an awkward barrier (9 of 10) and was strong to the line.”
The progressive youngster’s next major assignment will be in the $200,000 Listed VRC St Leger (2800m) at Flemington on April 25 during the Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival.
“I will give him a break for now and get him ready for some future staying races,” McArdle said.
“A race like the St Leger at Flemington on Anzac Day or the South Australian Derby may suit him, he’s got stayer written all over him.”
The $350,000 Group 1 SA Derby (2500m) runs at Morphettville on May 5.
In other Tasmanian race results from Sunday the Patrick Payne-trained Fieldmaster proved their potential for this weekend’s Group 3 Hobart Cup with a smart one and three-quarter length win over Dream Flyer in the $50,000 Jockey Club Cup (2100m).
The previously unraced Stratum colt Bush Aviator then won another one of the day’s three black-type features, the Victorian raider from Danny O’Brien’s Flemington stables saluting for the punters in the $100,000 Motors Elwick 2YO Stakes (1100m) when scoring an easy two and a quarter length victory over Testa Gee Gee ($17.90).
The meeting came to a close with the $150,000 Group 3 Bow Mistress Trophy (1200m), defending champ and local hero Lady Lynette ($2.30F) going down as the beaten favourite by two lengths to Leon Well’s up-and-coming Telesto mare Rebel Bride.
Rebel Bride has now won five on the trot.
Stay tuned to Races.com.au over the coming weeks for all the latest Tasmanian Summer Racing Carnival news, including the final field for this Sunday’s Hobart Cup 2012.
2012 Tasmanian Derby Results & Finishing Order
Hobart Race 8 – 05/02/2012
|1||7||METHUSELAH||John McArdle||Jarrod Todd||–||9||57kg||$18.50|
|2||2||BARYSH QUEST||Gary White||Craig Newitt||2.8L||2||57kg||$2.80F|
|3||4||COLONIAL GOLD||Gary White||Dean Holland||2.9L||7||57kg||$50.30|
|4||3||ROLLERBALL (NZ)||Robert Smerdon||Mark Zahra||4.2L||1||57kg||$3|
|5||5||JARSS ACT||Patrick Payne||Ms Michelle Payne||5.2L||4||57kg||$15.20|
|6||1||CARAVAGGIO||Anthony Freedman||Daniel Moor||5.4L||5||57kg||$4.80|
|7||10||MAGNUM||John P Thompson||Chris Symons||6.7L||6||57kg||$61.60|
|8||6||CHARTING (NZ)||Danny O’Brien||Jamie Mott||15.5L||3||57kg||$13.60|
|9||9||CRYSTAL ICON||Mathew Ellerton & Simon Zahra||Michael Walker||16L||10||57kg||$21.70|
|10||8||TALAQ DOWNS||Charlie Goggin & Luella Meaburn||Ms Talia Rodder||23.5L||8||57kg||$86.50|