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Lindsay Park has three runners in this weekend’s $2 million Victoria Derby at Flemington, but after a rather unkind barrier draw, it’s Mickey Blue Eyes who’s emerged as the stables greatest chance.
The colt out of Carolina Bella finished fifth last weekend at Moonee Valley in the Group 2 Vase. It was a competitive race headlined by two other Derby chances in Savoie and Stars of Carrum, however a closer look at the times shows Mickey Blue Eyes is well and truly wide in the market.
Ladbrokes has the three-year old listed on the third line of betting at $14.00 after originally opening at $17.00. Mickey Blue Eyes clocked the fastest splits from the 1600m to the 600m mark in the Vase, also running the second-fastest final furlong behind eventual winner, Stars of Carrum.
Barrier 12 was hardly kind to jockey Regan Bayliss last week, but it’s been from the very beginning that Mickey Blue Eyes was destined for big things.
The pair kicked off the Spring with a win at Bendigo over 1300m in the second week of September, which was then followed up by another win over 1600m at Royal Randwick a fortnight later.
The stable chose to back up that last win in the Dulcify in the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes on the same track in seven days’ time. Mickey Blue Eyes finished fifth behind third placegetter and Derby favourite Thinkin’ Big, even though the step up to 2000m looked a little challenging considering the turnaround.
For the second time this prep, the decision has been made to back up following last week’s run in the Vase. The good news is Mickey Blue Eyes is familiar with 2000m and beyond, and after having to run from the very widest part of the track last week, he should enjoy sitting somewhere toward midfield stalking the pace late.
It will take a mighty effort to defeat Thinkin’ Big, who has drawn barrier nine with Tim Clark on board. Mickey Blue Eyes is a great each way bet though, and a good chance to finish off this prep in the placings.
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