Mitch Maguire put up such a remarkable performance to buck the odds and win atlast Monday week that he should continue his winning ways by proving the master of his rivals in the $23,000 Milwaukee 18V Fuel Heavy Duty WA Derby Prelude over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
Several outstanding three-year-olds will contest Friday night’s event, but Mitch Maguire, trained by, has won with such authority at his past three starts that he should capitalise on his favourable barrier at No. 2 on the front line and notch his 11th win from 17 starts and his ninth win from ten starts in Western Australia.
will handle Mitch Maguire, replacing the suspended Ryan Warwick, who has driven the colt at all of his nine WA outings.
At Pinjarra on Monday of last week, Mitch Maguire started off 30m in a 2631m stand. He galloped badly and settled down some 20 lengths behind the early leader. He improved to be eighth at the bell and he sprinted brilliantly 550m from home to burst to the front at the 300m mark and then he coasted to victory at a 1.59 rate.
“It was a tremendous run,” said stable driver Ryan Bell. “We clocked him off the video to go his final mile and a half in 2min. 52sec.”
Bell said that he did not expect Friday night’s race to be a walk in the park for Mitch Maguire. “He’s got very good gate speed, but so have Im The Best (barrier one) and Herrick Roosevelt (three) and there might be fireworks early.”
Bell will drive Mitch Maguire’s stablemate Rock Diamonds from barrier five, for the first time in a race. “It’s a tricky draw and we’ll probably stay out of trouble and do our best work late,” he said. Rock Diamonds has shown excellent promise and has won at eight of his ten starts in WA.
Ace trainer Gary Hall sen. Will be represented by Herrick Roosevelt, who has made most of the running to win easily at his only two starts --- at Bunbury and Gloucester Park in December. He is favourably drawn at barrier three on the front line and will be driven by Clint Hall.
Gary Hall jun. will continue as the driver of the Michael Brennan-trained Im Rockaria, who has won at ten of his 17 starts and is awkwardly drawn at barrier seven.
Kim Prentice will drive Mustang Bart, a newcomer from Victoria who has drawn the inside of the back line for his WA debut for Victorian trainer Gary Barton. Mustang Bart has had 14 starts for three wins in Victoria and one in New South Wales.