New Zealand trainer John Bary is bullish over his chances of taking home an Aussie Group 1 trophy this weekend with his 2013 Queensland Derby betting favourite Survived in top form ahead of their shot at the Stradbroke Handicap Day feature on Saturday.
Zed gelding Survived has dominated futures betting on the $500,000 Group 1 Channel Seven Queensland Derby (2400m) over the past month with the bookies rating their crack form back home in NZ.
Already Survived boasts five wins and two minor placings from their eight turf assignments including back-to-back Group 3 victories during the autumn.
After a three quarter length effort over the Murray Baker-trained Usainity, also set to represent the Kiwis in the Queensland Derby field this year, in the Group 3 Manawatu Classic (2000m) in March Survived went on to record an emphatic four and a half length win in the Group 3 Hawke’s Bay Gold Cup (2200m).
They debuted down under at Eagle Farm Racecourse, home to Saturday’s QLD Derby clash, when second to the Chris Waller-trained Hawkspur in the Group 3 Rough Habit Plate (2100m) beaten by three lengths.
Survived gets their chance to turn the tables on the last start conqueror when they go for round two this weekend, Bary confident this time it will be his horse hitting the line first after their impressive gallop at Doomben over the weekend.
“He ripped into it and I’m confident he is right where we want him leading into the race,” Bary said.
“He seems to have come right in his coat and is thriving so hopefully he will be able to put it all together on Saturday.”
It seems the bookies agree too with the Rough Habit Plate quinella reversed in the Queensland Derby odds, Survived sitting narrowly ahead of Hawspur in the pre-field markets.
While Bary believes a month between runs for Survived won’t present any issues, Hawkspur having had a final lead-up when winning the Group 3 Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) on May 25, he is hoping the rain stays away and they can get a firmer track for Straddie Day.
“I would prefer a drier track on Saturday so he can get to show the devastating turn of foot he displayed in his wins in New Zealand,” he said.
The 2013 Queensland Derby final field and barrier draw, along with all the other Eagle Farm races this weekend including the $1.36 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m), are due for release at 11am (AEST) today.
So stay tuned to Races.com.au to view the acceptances and gates then head straight to bookmaker.com.au where the weekend’s best racing markets will be available.
Bookmaker.com.au also have the best State Of Origin betting markets for tonight including exclusive $2.10 line betting on the league clash of the year!