A black-type run in Sunday’s UCI Stakes at Flemington is the preferred next start option for Robbie Laing’s 2015 Victoria Derby bound youngster Kentucky Flyer who will also be nominated for a Moonee Valley Group 2 on Friday night as well.
Cranbourne horseman Laing is leaning towards a Turnbull Stakes Day run on Sunday this long-weekend in Melbourne with his Street Sense colt Kentucky Flyer targeting the $120,000 Listed UCI Stakes (1800m).
As an alternative option though the two-time winner will also hold a nomination for Moir Stakes Night on Friday evening in the $200,000 Group 2 Bill Stutt Stakes (1600m) on way to his Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival grand final on October 31.
Kentucky Flyer is on way to the $1.5 million Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington paying around $26 in the pre-field markets for the three-year-old’s classic, a target Laing has had on the cards for a while with full confidence his galloper will get the distance.
“Everyone that rides him says he’ll run two miles,” Laing said. “He’s such a relaxed horse.”
A winner of back-to-back races earlier this prep including over 1500m at Moonee Valley on September 5, the promising staying type last ran at Caulfield on September 19 when beaten under three lengths crossing sixth to the Mick Price-trained Tarzino over the mile.
Laing was pleased with that effort from a wide barrier 12 of 16 draw from Kentucky Flyer who had 60kg on his back and who will have jockey Vlad Duric aboard for the rest of this preparation.
“He ran the second fastest last 600m and had 3kg more than the winner and 6kg more than the minimum,” he told Racenet this week.
“He’s done super since his last run. He’s a lot better than he was before his last run.”
Previously the Stutt Stakes and UCI Stakes were held a week apart, but a rescheduled spring card sees Laing facing a choice of one or the other with Kentucky Flyer out to hand his trainer his second Victoria Derby success.
Two years ago Laing prepared Polanski (2013) for his Derby victory on the back of a Bill Stutt eighth, UCI Stakes win and victory in the Group 3 Norman Robinson Stakes (2000m) the start before that has produced two Victoria Derby winners since 2011 with Sangster (2011) running second in his lead-up to the Group 1 classic.
This year’s Norman Robinson is registered as the Caulfield Classic and is worth a juicy $750,000, running on Caulfield Cup Day on October 17.
Futures Victoria Derby betting is led by the likes of Chris Waller’s Group 3 Gloaming Stakes (1800m) winner in Sydney last Saturday Vanbrugh, Tavistock colt Tarzino and the Michael Moroney-trained Caulfield Guineas Prelude runner-up Tulsa.
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