Jon Snow continued the outstanding record of New Zealand raiders in the Australian Derby 2017 results handing co-trainer Murray Baker with a fourth win in the Royal Randwick classic on Day 1 of ‘The Championships’.
After an impressive Rosehill Guineas win in the wet last time out, it was the NZ Derby winner Gingernuts that was all the rage in betting on this year’s $2 million Group 1 BMW Australian Derby (2400m).
The bookies had kept the wrong Kiwi raider safe in the markets however with an upset scored by the Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman-trained Jon Snow, a NZ$65,000 bargain buy.
“It’s a big thrill,” Forsman said post-win on Saturday.
“It’s been quite a journey. Murray’s record in this race is second to none and he knows how to get them fit and ready.”
Baker has now prepared four ATC Derby winners in the past decade with Jon Snow joining Nom Du Jeu (2008), It’s A Dundeel (2013) and Mongolian Khan (2015).
Third in the NZ Derby over the mile and a half two back, Iffraaj colt Jon Snow debuted down under last Saturday at Rosehill with a nearly three length win in the Group 2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m).
He bounced out of that race beautifully and presented rock hard fit on Doncaster Mile Day, relishing a slightly firmer track and the step back-up in distance for the Australian Derby.
“He won [the Tulloch Stakes] so well and bounced through the run,” Forsman said.
“His work on Thursday morning was brilliant and everything’s just gone so well since we came over here.
“The whole journey’s been a great thrill.”
Ridden to victory by Damian Lane who retained the ride on the quick seven day turnaround, Jon Snow completed the Tulloch Stakes – Australian Derby double for the first time since Starcraft in 2004.
Gingernuts revved out of the gates in the Australian Derby before settling midfield, the field led around by the eventual runner-up Harper’s Choice for trainer Gerald Ryan.
Ridden by Jason Collett and coming off a fifth in the Rosehill Guineas a fortnight back, Street Cry colt Harper’s Choice strode alone at a nice even temp ahead of Jon Snow who was up on the speed in second.
With a mile to go the favourite was still being patiently ridden back fourth last, Harper’s Choice still up front giving them something to chase home.
At the 700m the challengers started to get going, including David Brideoake’s last start Alister Clark Stakes winner Hardham.
The race was well and truly on coming up to the turn, Gingernuts the deepest coming into the straight.
He tried and looked to be travelling well, but didn’t have the late finish of the others.
At the 200m mark Jon Snow raced up into the lead beating off Harper’s Choice who finished a brave second after the good on-speed run, while Hardham off the beautiful transit finished off the ATC Derby trifecta in third.
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2017 Australian Derby Results & Finishing Order
Randwick Race 7 – 01/04/2017
|1||4||JON SNOW (NZ)||Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman||Damian Lane||–||9||56.5kg||$7.50|
|2||9||HARPER’S CHOICE||Gerald Ryan||Jason Collett||0.8L||10||56.5kg||$26|
|3||6||HARDHAM||David Brideoake||Luke Nolen||0.9L||5||56.5kg||$31|
|4||8||RUTHVEN||Ciaron Maher||Mark Zahra||2.1L||8||56.5kg||$15|
|5||2||GINGERNUTS (NZ)||Stephen Autridge & Jamie Richards||Opie Bosson||3.3L||12||56.5kg||$2.60F|
|6||3||INFERENCE||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Tommy Berry||5.4L||4||56.5kg||$5|
|7||1||PRIZED ICON||James Cummings||Glyn Schofield||9.5L||6||56.5kg||$11|
|8||10||HOLLYWOOD MO||Paul Perry||Zac Purton||9.6L||3||56.5kg||$101|
|9||7||ANAHEIM||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Hugh Bowman||9.8L||1||56.5kg||$11|
|10||11||IMPAVIDO||Bjorn Baker||Joao Moreira||10.1L||11||56.5kg||$20|
|11||5||SO SI BON||Robbie Laing||Kerrin McEvoy||12.8L||7||56.5kg||$15|
|12||13||SHINE TAK STAR||John Sargent||Brenton Avdulla||24.3L||13||56.5kg||$201|
|13||12||RIGHTEOUS MATE (NZ)||Mark Newnham||Tye Angland||50L||2||56.5kg||$151|