Murwillumbah trainer Matthew Dunn is looking...
Versatile jumps and flat racing hoop John Allen believes his mount in Saturday’s 2017 Queensland Derby Volatile Mix remains a “great chance” despite the race being moved to the 2200m circuit at Doomben Racecourse.
Allen is in line for an interstate Derby double after partnering the Darren Weir-trained Pentire gelding Volatile Mix to victory two back in Adelaide’s Group 1 South Australian Derby (2500m).
Jockey Damian Lane took over for the three-year-old’s first Brisbane run on May 27 when Volatile Mix dropped in distance and finished a close second behind Order Again on a Heavy (8) Eagle Farm track in the Group 3 Grand Prix Stakes (2200m).
The Grand Prix Stakes has produced three of the past five Queensland Derby winners including Eagle Way last Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival, the Brian Guy-trained galloper improving on a lead-up second to take out the Group 1 over 2400m at Eagle Farm.
Allen, who missed the Grand Prix Stakes ride due to jumps racing commitments, is back in the saddle on Saturday and thinks a staying test over the mile and a half at that track would have been ideal for Volatile Mix in the Queensland Derby for 2017.
The race however will take place over a decreased distance of 2200m with the full Stradbroke Handicap Day card to run at Doomben due to the poor conditions of the controversial Eagle Farm course.
“I’m on Volatile Mix in the Derby and I think he’s in with a great chance,” dual Group 1 winner Allen told Racing Victoria.
“For him, we probably would’ve preferred if the race was still at Eagle Farm but he did run well over 2200m last time so he looks to be in the mix.
“I think he’s come through it good but I’m going up there on Tuesday morning to gallop him so we’ll see how he goes there, but all reports are that he’s going well.”
In pre-field markets for the $600,000 Group 1 Queensland Derby at Ladbrokes.com.au Volatile Mix sits as the $5 second elect behind his last start conqueror, Order Again ($4.80).
Victorian trainer Weir is tipped to saddle-up three horses in the Queensland Derby field on the weekend with Volatile Mix to be joined by Rockstar Rebel ($15) and Mongolian Wolf ($9).
Rebel Raider colt Rockstar Rebel was last seen saluting over 2200m at Ballarat in a Benchmark 70 on May 24, while Pluck gelding Mongolian Wolf is out to atone for an unplaced run over 2000m at Caulfield in mid-May.
The official Queensland Derby 2017 final field is set for release on Wednesday making now the time to back your early selections at all-in prices online at Ladbrokes.com.au.
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