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Local Ascot trainer Colin Webster remains confident his in-form Blackfriars filly Pop Culture can go back-to-back for the girls in the 2102 WATC Derby on Saturday in Perth despite drawing double digits.
Pop Culture is out to emulate the feat of Dreamaway, then prepared in WA by Grant Williams, who won the WA Oaks – WATC Derby last autumn.
And like Dreamaway, who overcame barrier 11 of 14 to win the Derby, this year’s WA Oaks winner Pop Culture will jump out wide from gate 10 of 14 for the $400,000 Group 2 Schweppes W.A.T.C. Derby (2400m).
Despite the draw Pop Culture is likely to open at the top of the WATC Derby odds at our preferred online bookie bookmaker.com.au, jockey Troy Turner maintaining his association with the four time winner.
Webster will also be represented in the 2012 WATC Derby field by Dash For Home who fared even worse with the barriers drawing 12.
To be ridden by Jarrad Noske with their regular jockey Turner sticking with stablemate Pop Culture, Dash For Cash gelding Dash For Home was last seen finishing two and a half lengths away fourth behind Lethal Jones in the Listed Melvista Stakes (2200m) at Ascot on March 31.
“They’re both out a bit wide but they get a good run from the 2400 (metre) start down the straight so hopefully the boys can get them in nice positions,” Webster said of his Derby duo.
“You hope for better draws but that’s the way the cookie crumbles.
“They both galloped beautifully on the grass at Ascot (this week) and they’re going in nice and fit.”
The trio that beat Dash For Cash home in the Melvista are all accepted to back up in the Derby on Saturday with the winner Lethal Jones in barrier seven, Neville Parnham’s runner-up Reign Of Terror to have the inside run from gate one, and third placed Rohan jumping from barrier four with Glenn Smith in the saddle.
“I don’t think there’s a lot between them,” Webster said of Pop Culture and Dash For Cash.
“She (Pop Culture) has been trained for the Oaks and he’s been trained for the Derby.
“She might have the edge on performances but he’ll be very fit.
“She’s a really tough and enormously relaxed horse so that helps to keep them up.
“It’s a very even field and it will be interesting to see if the form from the Eastern States performer holds up.”
It is shaping up as a tough edition of the WATC Derby with other big name players including WA Oaks runner-up The Social Network in last year’s winning barrier (11), Michael Moroney’s in-form Victorian Flashy Fella (barrier 2), and Grant Williams’ WA Oaks third placed Elite Belle.
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