Day At The Track

Victoria Derby draw from the horse's mouth

01:50 AM 02 Feb 2011 NZDT
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1) Hez Matt Maguire: 'It (trailing favourite Royal Verdict) looks the perfect scenario but in these big races, the perfect scenario is always a long shot of happening. We'll take the short way home from the rail and if Royal Verdict can cart the field it will be beautiful.' - Cran Dalgety, Trainer

2) Royal Verdict: “I’ve only ever had two Derby runners and they’ve both run third (Our Captain Snooze, 1984 and Bad Cat, 2008) so it would be nice to win one. I’m very happy with the barrier. We won’t be doing anything different from there. He should be a big improver on his first run and he’s done well since he raced (last week).” – Ian Dornauf, Trainer/Driver,

3) Jadahson (1st Emergency)

4) Devilish Smile: “It’s the first time we’ve had a decent draw in a Group 1 race, so we’re very happy. We’ve set him for the Derby all along and his (heat) run was sensational because they went so slow and he came home hard.” – Pam Hockham, Owner

5) Im The Liberator: “A bit disappointed with the draw – I would like to have been in close – but we didn’t really expect to be in the race. We’re really rapt that we are there, but realise we’ve probably got our job cut out.” – Ross Sugars, Trainer

6) The Muskeg Express “I’m pretty happy with the draw, at least we’re off the front row and we can go forward from there. We haven’t had this horse very long but he’s a very nice type and if he can get into the race I’d definitely say he’s in the top handful of chances.” – Luke McCarthy, Trainer/Driver

7) The Gold Ace: “I said to Peter (Ferguson, driver), ‘Where do you want to draw?’ and he said, ‘As long as it’s not eight I’m happy’, so I’m happy.” – Steve Reid, Trainer

8) Glengowan: “He should get a nice soft run from there (inside the back row) and we just have to hope that there’s a bit of action up front. We can’t do much from that draw at the start, we’ve just got to bank on the one horse coming out all right. I’d rather draw there than draw out in seven because some of those big races are won three or four back the fence.” – Mark Billinger, Driver

9) Excel Stride: “I would have rather drawn the front row but that’s the best you can get off the back row, so we’re very happy. I think he’ll be better for having a week here, settling in a bit better, so I think he’ll improve a bit off last week’s run.” – Elizabeth Heath, Trainer

10) The Phantom: “It’s a magic draw, it gives us the opportunity to follow through Devilish Smile (if emergency Jadahson doesn’t run) and it will give us the chance to pounce when we need to.” – Merv Butterworth, Owner

11) Sushi Sushi: “It’s not the ideal draw but there’s not much we can do about it now, so we just have to hope for a truly run race. The plus side is that he’s a pretty versatile horse and if it’s run to suit he’ll be finishing very hard late.” – Greg Sugars, Driver

12) Abettorpunt: “We just want to drive him the same way we did the other night – just let him drop off the arm, and hopefully he gets the right luck from the 1000m to the 400m where he gets himself into a winnable position. We had the luck last week and if we could get luck again we should be OK.” – Caleb Lewis, Driver

13) Our Major Mark: “He did miss a little bit of work, he got a little bit of a bug and had a couple of weeks out and it just meant he missed a lead-up run into the Derby heats, but last week I was quite pleased with him the way sectionals were. He didn’t lose ground on the leaders (late), but he probably didn’t make any.” – Mark Purdon, Trainer/Driver




Alistair Hogg – Media & Communications Manager

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