Emerging galloper Escado delivered young Mornington trainer Matt Laurie his first Group 1 win with a strong staying performance in the $500,000 2013 South Australian Derby (2500m) at Morphetville today.
The Casino Prince gelding had been slightly below his best this campaign after showing promise during the spring but he peaked at the right time in Adelaide’s biggest three-year-old race.
A top Ben Melham ride allowed Escado to let down at the perfect time and he powered through the line down the inside of the track to score a convincing win from local hope Hioctdane and fellow Victorian Shoreham.
Laurie was lost for words to describe the performance but was full of praise for the ride of Melham.
“No words to describe it,” Laurie said.
“It’s out third Group 1 runner and it’s just great to get the result.
“He’s [Melham] in great form, he’s a great jockey and a great mate. I’m glad we’ve been able to do it as a combination.”
Laurie said he is not sure where his spring targets will lie but Melham was happy to endorse Escado as a potential spring carnival contender despite the horse lacking size.
“It wasn’t hopeless today this field and he’s certainly very genuine,” Melham said.
“What he doesn’t have in height he makes up for in finding the line.”
Alister Clark Stakes winner Hvasstan was one of the top fancies in betting but struggled and eventually laboured to finish in 14th position.
The South Australian Derby may be over for another year but Group 1 action continues in Adelaide next week with the Goodwood and bookmaker.com.au will have top odds!
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South Australian Derby 2013 – Results
|1||6||ESCADO||Matt Laurie||Ben Melham||–||1||56.5kg||$14|
|2||2||HIOCTDANE||Richard Jolly||Paul Gatt||1.7L||15||56.5kg||$5.50|
|3||3||SHOREHAM||Saab Hasan||Chris Symons||1.8L||3||56.5kg||$4F|
|4||4||GERONTIUS||David Hayes||Dwayne Dunn||2.1L||2||56.5kg||$5.50|
|5||14||LIKE A CAROUSEL||Ken Keys||Ms Clare Lindop||2.9L||4||56.5kg||$101|
|6||8||MCNULTY||Michael Kent||Vlad Duric||4.3L||5||56.5kg||$13|
|7||13||HE’SNOTTHEMESSIAH (NZ)||Michael Kent||Brad Rawiller||4.5L||6||56.5kg||$16|
|8||11||PACKING EMPIRE (NZ)||David Hayes||Craig Robertson||4.6L||12||56.5kg||$20|
|9||15||MOLTO BENE||Roslyn Day||Todd Pannell||4.6L||8||54.5kg||$10|
|10||9||COOLDINI||Robert Smerdon||Jamie Mott||4.7L||7||56.5kg||$21|
|11||5||GOLD MEDALS (NZ)||Bill & Symon Wilde||Stephen Baster||6.4L||9||56.5kg||$41|
|12||10||BEL THOR||Wez Hunter||Jarrod Fry||7.7L||14||56.5kg||$61|
|13||12||GINGERBOY||Darren Weir||Simon Price||11.6L||10||56.5kg||$101|
|14||1||HVASSTAN||Peter Gelagotis||Glen Boss||12.9L||11||56.5kg||$5|
|15||7||PINS OF PELE (NZ)||Anthony Freedman||Chad Lever||19.3L||13||56.5kg||$26|