Odeon Primed for 2017 SA Derby

Co-trainer Simon Zahra is confident that Odeon will relish a step up to 2500m when he takes his place in Saturday’s featured 2017 Group 1 SA Derby at Morphettville Racecourse.

Odeon is the early favourite for Saturday's Group 1 SA Australian Derby at Morphettville. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos

Odeon is the early favourite for Saturday’s Group 1 SA Australian Derby at Morphettville. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos

Odeon has returned to the races in outstanding condition this time in and will carry winning form into his 2017 South Australian Derby appearance after delivering a smart field a comfortable defeat in the Sky High Mt Dandenong BM84 (2000m) at Caulfield on April 29th.

Having savaged the line in what was his first appearance at 2000m a fortnight ago, Zahra told AAP that the Zacinto gelding has taken plenty of benefit from the run and he believes that with luck, he will lay a great account for himself in the South Australian Derby 2017.

“He was strong to the line the other day over 2000,” Zahra said.

“His sectionals were good and his mother (Theatre Buff) won over 2400 metres twice.

“He’s got a turn of foot and I think he thrives off good tempos. All his best races have been off strong tempos. To me the distance is not going to be a worry.

“We just need a bit of luck.

“He had a little gallop on Friday to keep him ticking over and he’ll do a piece of work on Tuesday and that will be about it.

“He’s pretty fit now, nice and round and he looks good.”

Odeon showed fleeting ability between lacklustre performances in 2016 and Zahra credits his increased ability to the decision to geld the horse in late spring.

“He was just not concentrating and probably just wasn’t quite there off his first preparation,” Zahra said.

“We gelded him and he lightened off a bit so we gave him a spell and just targeted this Derby, instead of Sydney, with it being a bit later.

“It’s all gone to plan so far and we’ve just got a week to go.

“He’s been a different horse. He’s always been a magnificent track worker and always shown us ability but he just got to the races and carried on.”

Resuming for consecutive wins in a pair of Victorian minors over 1400m and a mile respectively, Odeon ran a credible second behind Grand Chancellor in the Listed Port Adelaide Guineas (1800m) on April 8th, in what was his only other start prior to his last-start win.

The 2017 South Australian Derby field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday.

Odeon is currently considered the early $4 favourite in 2017 South Australian Derby betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au.


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