The 2014 Australian Derby barrier draw has been completed; with outright favourite Criterion set to jump from the inside barrier in the Group 1 event at Royal Randwick this weekend.
Criterion has performed consistently at the highest level of racing since making his racing debut at the end of 2012 and broke through for a well-deserved Group 1 victory with an outstanding performance in the Rosehill Guineas (2000m) on March 29.
The Sebring colt has been well-backed to record his second Group 1 win in the Australian Derby this weekend and has the chance to join Innocent King (1993), Universal Prince (2001) and Don Eduardo (2002) as the only horses to win the Australian Derby from barrier one.
One of the biggest winners of the 2014 Australian Derby barrier draw was Thunder Fantasy, who will start from barrier eight – a gate that has housed recent Australian Derby winners Shoot Out (2010), Shamrocker (2001) and It’s A Dundeel.
Thunder Fantasy stamped himself as a horse to watch with a strong performance in the Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) last year and bounced back from a lackluster performance in the Group 1 Australian Cup to finish second behind Criterion in the Rosehill Guineas.
New Zealand Derby winner Puccini remains on the second line of Australian Derby betting after connections drew barrier 11 this afternoon, but is no certainty to contest the race; with trainer Peter McKay worried about the threat of a wet Royal Randwick track this weekend.
Puccini failed to fire when making his Australian racing debut in the Rosehill Guineas, but connections will be hoping he can produce an improved performance on a dry track with leading Melbourne jockey Craig Williams on board.
Savvy Nature was allocated barrier 12 at the 2014 Australian Derby barrier draw; a result that will pleased trainer John O’Shea, who was hoping for an outside barrier draw for the son of Savabeel.
The three-year-old failed to run out the trip when he started the 2013 Victoria Derby as one of the favourites, but has given the impression he will relish the step-up to 2400 metres this preparation after working home fairly in both the Randwick Guineas and Rosehill Guineas.
Another galloper that is set to appreciate the step-up in trip is Bruce Hill-trained Teronado, who will jump from barrier ten with Craig Newitt on his back on Saturday.
Teronado is yet to produce a poor performance since returning to the races at the start of the year and his closing sectionals in the Australian Guineas, Royal Randwick Guineas and Rosehill Guineas have been some of the strongest in the Group 1 events.
Horses that will start from the outside of the 2014 Australian Derby field include the Anthony Cummings-trained duo of Surge Ahead (barrier 15) and Best Case (barrier 14), Tulloch Stakes winner Gallatin (barrier 17), Peter Moody-trained Cadillac Mountain (barrier 16), the consistent Solo Saga (barrier four) and New Zealand-based Mountain View (barrier 18).
The 2014 Australian Derby is one of four Group 1 events that will be held at Royal Randwick on Saturday as part of the opening day of The Championships and you can find the best odds for all the major races at Ladbrokes.com.au.
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2014 Australian Derby Field And Barrier Draw
|#||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||00224×4281||CRITERION (NZ)||David Payne||Hugh Bowman||1||56.5kg||100|
|2||3514141110||PUCCINI (NZ)||Peter & Jacob McKay||Craig Williams||11||56.5kg||105|
|3||11593×1382||THUNDER FANTASY||Anthony Cummings||Damien Oliver||8||56.5kg||99|
|4||312310×374||SAVVY NATURE (NZ)||John O’Shea||James McDonald||12||56.5kg||96|
|5||4125×35543||TERONADO||Bruce W Hill||Craig Newitt||10||56.5kg||77|
|6||1x2131x700||KOROIBETE||Gerald Ryan||Damian Browne||6||56.5kg||81|
|7||1151×7637||SURGE AHEAD||Anthony Cummings||Zac Purton||15||56.5kg||78|
|8||3x513x6351||GALLATIN||Peter Snowden||Nash Rawiller||17||56.5kg||70|
|9||x4444x5855||HOOKED||John P Thompson||Blake Shinn||3||56.5kg||77|
|10||124144×153||BEST CASE (NZ)||Anthony Cummings||Christian Reith||13||56.5kg||73|
|11||5x0170x611||CRIME FIGHTER||Peter G Moody||Luke Nolen||5||56.5kg||73|
|12||x21925x309||TUPAC AMARU||Peter Snowden||Kerrin McEvoy||4||56.5kg||70|
|13||2868×61012||SINGING FLAME||Kevin Moses||Tim Clark||2||56.5kg||63|
|14||2419×128||CADILLAC MOUNTAIN||Peter G Moody||Chad Schofield||16||56.5kg||–|
|15||66×5100212||SOLO SAGA||Bevan Laming||Jim Cassidy||14||56.5kg||–|
|16||3310×31434||MOUNTAIN VIEW (NZ)||John Sargent||Joao Moreira||18||56.5kg||68|
|17||x14579x961||SURGING WAVE||David Hayes||Michael Rodd||9||56.5kg||–|
|18||870×003305||HERESDECASINO||Neville & Christopher Voigt||–||7||56.5kg||52|