Just ten three-year-olds have been confirmed in the 2015 Australian Derby (2400m) final field, highlighted by the inclusion of several previous winners at the highest level of racing; to be contest on Day 1 of The Championships at Royal Randwick.
The Chris Waller-trained Preferment is seeking a Derby double this weekend but will have to overcome the outside barrier 10 if to complete the rare feat.
Posting one win and five minor place finishes through his ten start career so far, Preferment steadily built to the task through the Spring Racing Carnival and incredibly posted a maiden race win in the featured Group 1 Victorian Derby (2500m).
Unable to make an impact in either of the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) or Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) upon resuming this year, the Zabeel colt locked in a fierce sprint battle with kiwi raider Volkstok’N’Barrell in the final straight of the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) two weeks ago and was unlucky to finish second.
Volkstok’N’Barrell is yet to finish outside the first three in nine competitive starts and is offered a great chance of further success in the 2015 Australian Derby after drawing the ideal barrier 5.
Breaking through for a maiden black type win in the Group 3 Bonecrusher Stakes (1400m) in spring, Volkstok’N’Barrell posting three consecutive victories upon resuming this time, highlighted by each of the Group 2 Great Northern Guineas (1600m) and Listed Karaka Mile (1600m).
Progressing to third in the Group 2 Avondale Guineas (2100m) and second to fellow Australian Derby contestant Mongolian Khan in the Group 1 New Zealand Derby (2400m), the Lord Tavistock gelding has been confirmed to be partnered by Rosehill Guineas jockey Craig Williams.
Murray Baker experienced success in the 2013 edition of the Australian Derby with It’s A Dundeel, and is offered a great chance of saddling the 2015 winner in Mongolian Khan (barrier 1).
Posting six wins from his eight career starts, the Holy Roman Emperor colt was unable to match the late pace when fifth in the Rosehill Guineas but stamped his claims as a serious Australian Derby prospect in winning each of the Listed Guineas Prelude (2100m), Group 2 Waikato Guineas (2000m), Group 2 Avondale Guineas (2100m) and New Zealand Derby.
Hampton Court will line up for his four competitive start in as many weeks in the 2015 Australian Derby but is likely to find a good position early from gate 6.
A Group 1 winner having stormed home to win the Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) on October 11th, the son of Redoute’s Choice is yet to find peak condition over a total of four starts this year and enters the Australian Derby off the back of a disappointing ninth in The BMW (2400m) last weekend.
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2015 Australian Derby Final Field and Barrier Draw
|No||Last 10||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Barrier||Weight||Hcp Rating|
|1||322421×062||PREFERMENT (NZ)||Chris Waller||Damien Oliver||10||56.5kg||105|
|2||311×111321||VOLKSTOK’N’BARRELL (NZ)||Donna Logan||Craig Williams||5||56.5kg||108|
|3||10111115||MONGOLIAN KHAN||Murray Baker||Opie Bosson||1||56.5kg||105|
|4||34118×9669||HAMPTON COURT||Gai Waterhouse||Joshua Parr||6||56.5kg||100|
|5||11×6021||HAURAKI||John O’Shea||James McDonald||9||56.5kg||88|
|6||x3311x3534||QUICK STRIKE||Chris Waller||Tye Angland||3||56.5kg||72|
|7||412||OMEROS||John Sargent||Joao Moreira||2||56.5kg||78|
|8||461215||RULING DYNASTY||Bart & James Cummings||Tommy Berry||4||56.5kg||71|
|9||8817||BIKILA||Pat Carey||Chad Schofield||8||56.5kg||64|
|10||3×4310||BROGUE (NZ)||Steve Englebrecht||Christian Reith||7||56.5kg||64|