A field full of Queensland Derby 2014 hopes will face off in Saturday’s $125,000 Group 3 Mittys Rough Habit Plate (2000m), nominations for the BTC Cup Day lead-up now out.
There are 17 three-year-olds making up the 2014 Rough Habit Plate nominations, all but three of which also feature in the early entries for the $500,000 Group 1 Channel 7 Queensland Derby (2400m) at Eagle Farm on June 7.
One of the top early fancies in futures Queensland Derby betting is New Zealand raider Telepathic, the Donna Logan-trained Mossman filly set to debut in the Rough Habit.
A winner of three of her six career starts back home the up-and-comer was last seen winning a Benchmark 85 over the mile at Avondale on Anzac Day where she beat home the boys.
That was her second from as many starts this time in, and enough to earn her a trip across the Tasman for a Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival campaign.
Telepathic is also set to target the $400,000 Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m) the weekend before the Derby which, if she performs well, could see out her prep.
Runner-up to Logan’s smart filly last time out, Glorious Lad is another visiting Kiwi to run down under for the first time in the Rough Habit Plate.
Prepared by Shaun Ritchie the Falkirk gelding was a half-length off Telepathic in the Governor General’s Cup.
Before that they finished a brave third behind Puccini (1st) and subsequent Australian Oaks winner Rising Romance (2nd) in the Group 1 New Zealand Derby (2400m) so they have form around some top three-year-olds.
As for the Aussie hopes, last year’s Queensland Derby winning trainer Chris Waller is preparing to saddle-up two Rough Habit Plate hopes that could progress onto the Stradbroke Handicap Day showdown.
Waller won the Derby last winter with Hawkspur who also won the Rough Habit Plate by three lengths in the lead-up.
This year Waller’s Rough Habit hopes are Fastnet Rock gelding Falago who is up in class and Group 2 Autumn Classic winner over 1800m back in February Vilanova.
Another Sydney trainer looking to take out the race is Gai Waterhouse with Pheidon.
Also a Group 2 winner earlier in the autumn having taken out the Alister Clark Stakes (2040m) at Moonee Valley, the Al Maher gelding was last seen running second to Arabian Gold in the Group 3 Frank Packer Plate (2000m) at Randwick on April 26.
Trevor Bailey also backs up an in-form youngster here with Street Cry gelding Avalanches coming off a good second to Hopfgarten in the Group 3 Gunsynd Classic (1600m) at Eagle Farm the Saturday before last.
Third placegetter in that race, Rudy, is another Rough Habit Plate nominee.
Helen Page’s Gold Coast-based Red Dazzler gelding won back-to-back Doomben races this prep and then came within one and a half lengths of the winner in the Gunsynd.
Other notable hopes include Kelly Doughty’s in-form Arki vying for their third on the trot and Peter Moody’s ATC Derby graduate Cadillac Mountain (9th).
See below for the full Mittys Rough Habit Plate 2014 nominations, the final field set for release on Wednesday.
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2014 Rough Habit Plate Nominations
Doomben Racecourse – 10/05/2014
|1||ALWAYS A GIBBERER||John P Thompson|
|2||AMEXED (NZ)||Tony Gollan|
|5||BODEGA NEGRA||Bruce W Hill|
|6||CADILLAC MOUNTAIN||Peter G Moody|
|7||CASARATI||Bruce W Hill|
|9||GLORIOUS LAD (NZ)||Shaune Ritchie|
|12||ROCK SCENT||Kelly Schweida|
|14||SAGUARO (NZ)||Peter G Moody|
|15||STAR WARS (NZ)||Scott Aspery|
|16||TELEPATHIC (NZ)||Donna Logan|
|17||VILANOVA (NZ)||Chris Waller|