Victoria Derby 2012 Hope to Run at Canterbury

New Zealand 2012 Victoria Derby hope It’s A Dundeel will have the second start of his spring campaign at Canterbury tomorrow.

Formerly known as Dundeel, before being forced into a change to avoid confusion with Chris Waller’s Done Deal, the promising colt will contest the first race of the day over 1580 metres tomorrow.

It is the Murray Baker-trained three-year-old’s second start on Australian soil after saluting with an eye-catching win first-up at Wyong last month.

Unbeaten from two career starts, the son of High Chaparral has been brought to Australia to chase glory in some major spring races.

It is likely he will get his first Saturday test in the Group 3 Gloaming Stakes (1800m) on September 22 before being set for Group 1 glory in the 2012 Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on October 6.

All going well, Baker will attempt to win his second Victoria Derby with It’s A Dundeel at the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival.

The experienced New Zealand trainer took out the three-year-old feature in dominant fashion with Lion Tamer in 2010 who followed a similar path to the one outlined for It’s A Dundeel.

Lion Tamer was unplaced in both the Gloaming Stakes and Spring Champion Stakes before winning the Group 2 Moonee Valley Vase ahead of the Derby win.

Baker said the Canterbury outing was out of necessity as there weren’t any other suitable races leading into the Gloaming.

“He’ll start at Canterbury over 1580 metres as there’s not another race for him before the Gloaming and he can’t go four and a-half weeks without a race,” Baker said.

Fellow New Zealand sprinter contender Pussy Willow will make her Australian soil debut this Saturday for Stephen McKee in the Group 2 Furious Stakes at Warwick Farm.

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