Talented two-year-old Ready For Victory has stamped his claims as a serious Golden Slipper prospect at Flemington this afternoon; displaying a keen turn of foot late to take out the Listed Festival Of Racing 1000 (1000m).
Jumping from the gates well, jockey Nick Hall settled the debutant into a good rhythm away from the barriers, allowing early leaders and clear favourite Heatherly to set a quick tempo along the rails early.
Steadily spooling up over the final 400m, the More Than Ready colt exploded 200m from the post; hunting down Heatherly in the final 50m and hitting the line half a length in the clear; Claudia Jean boxing on for third.
Trainer Mick Price was understandable pleased with Ready For Victory’s debut success in the Festival Of Racing 1000, and confirmed the 2015 Golden Slipper will figure for the youngster.
“I thought he might travel a bit better,” Price said.
“He had a slap over the shoulder probably about 400m after jump because there was good pace in it.
“I think those horses that improve from the 600m and just keep improving each furlong, they show good depth of ability … and that’s what he did, so his ability got him the win.
“I’ve probably got a week to look at him and then he’s got to get on a float in Sydney and go the reverse way – obviously a very big task but he can’t win it sitting at home.”
Hall delivered a perfectly-timed ride on Ready For Victory for success in the Festival Of Racing 1000 and is confident the conditions of the Golden Slipper will play directly into that talented colt’s strengths.
“We’ve been waiting a while for him and they’re not always as fast as they look, but this one is,” Hall said after the race.
“It really suited us – we were able to just sort of sit back off the bridle, had a good day out and onwards and upwards from here.
“I reckon there’s some improvement for him to come and I think he’ll be better over a little bit further too.”