Bookies around the country have opened their futures markets for the upcoming Queensland Derby 2012 and Gai Waterhouse’s progressive galloper Fat Al is the clear early favourite for the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival classic.
Running on the biggest day of the festival as part of Stradbroke Handicap Day at Eagle Farm on Saturday June 9, the $500,000 Group 1 Channel 7 Queensland Derby (2400m) officially has 137 three-year-olds nominated.
Topping the early Queensland Derby odds at our preferred online bookie bookmaker.com.au is Sydneysider Fat Al, the ultra-consistent Al Maher gelding paying $4.40.
Fat Al has an excellent strike rate having won five of their seven starts to date including their three this season.
At their last two runs they have won at Group 3 level taking out the Carbine Club Stakes – Frank Packer Plate double.
Waterhouse is gearing them up for a big winter grand final opting not to send them to Adelaide this Saturday for the Group 1 SA Derby (2500m).
The bookies are having a hard time separating the next best of the Queensland Derby nominees with seven others at single-figures.
The other horses under $10 in the Queensland Derby betting markets are:
- Artistic ($6) – Shaune Ritchie’s NZ Oaks winning filly comes down under for the first time this weekend for the Gold Coast Bracelet in Queensland, Kiwi fillies have a good winter record in the sunshine state and she’s proven at the distance
- Cornell ($6.50) – Anthony Freedman-trained Elusive Quality gelding enjoyed a big win in the Port Adelaide Guineas (1800m) two back before their close third in the Group 3 Chairman’s Stakes (2000m) at Morphettville last weekend, ran a good second to subsequent Victoria Derby runner-up in the Geelong Classic over 2200m last October and while they failed in the Vic Derby (12th of 16) they look to have improved
- Strike The Stars ($6.50) – Anthony Cummings’ well-tried son of Savabeel has run in four Group 1’s this season, most recently crossing an eye-catching fourth to Ethiopia in the Australian Derby (2400m), out to maintain that form heading into the winter in the SA Derby this Saturday
- Zabeelionaire ($7) – Favourite for the SA Derby on Saturday, Leon Corstens’ Zabeel colt was an emphatic Caulfield winner of 2000m last time out and ran a good fourth in the Victoria Derby over the 2500m last spring, looking to improve with each run this time in as well
- Isopach ($8) – Genuine staying type for John Thompson, out of Zabeel mare Curvaceous so this son of Magic Albert is a bred stayer which they showed with a close fifth in the Victoria Derby during the spring, last seen finishing four lengths away fourth to Fat Al in the Group 3 Frank Packer Plate (2000m) and will get closer as the distance increases
- Vatuvei ($8) – Progressive Reset gelding from the Melbourne stables of Peter Moody, scored a great victory in the VRC St Leger (2800m) on Anzac Day qualifying them for the Caulfield and Melbourne Cup, bypasses the SA Derby but should be fit and fresh for the Queensland Derby
- Malandrino ($8.50) – Exciting Kiwi galloper prepared by Cambridge-based Murray Baker, won both their starts this time in including the Group 3 Manawatu Classic (2000m) on March 31, not sure what path they are taking but one to watch when they arrive
The Queensland Derby betting picture will be much clearer after the 2012 SA Derby at Morphettville on Saturday where a number of the main chances will face off including Strike The Stars, Zabeelionaire and Cornell.
See below for the top 15 chances in the latest Queensland Derby ante-post odds courtesy of bookmaker.com.au.
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2012 Queensland Derby Odds
Eagle Farm – 09/06/2012
|STRIKE THE STARS||6.50|
*Fixed Win Odds are Top 15 only and subject to change – see bookmaker.com.au for updates