Hey Doc showed an impressive turn-of-foot to record an impressive victory in the 2017 Australian Guineas at Flemington this afternoon.
Hey Doc went into the Australian Guineas as a dominant favourite and there was a few nervous moments early for favourite-backers as the Duporth gelding over raced.
Jockey Luke Currie was eventually able to get Hey Doc into a nice rhythm just behind the speed and Currie found a gap on the inside at the top of the straight.
Hey Doc quickly put a couple of lengths on his rivals quickly and he had the Australian Guineas won a long way from home.
Currie does not get a great deal of opportunities on genuine chances in Group 1 events and the underrated hoop was quick to thank trainer Tony McEvoy and the connections of Hey Doc for keeping him on the horse.
“He has been a good horse for me,” Currie said.
“The team has stuck with me – it would have been easy to find a high-profile hoop to ride these sort of horses in big races.
“I am happy to get the job done today.
“I was a little bit worried because I had to use him to take that gap a little bit sooner than I would have liked, but beggars can’t be chooses and I was happy to take it when it came.
“As a young jockey you dream of riding Group 1 winners at Flemington and that is a dream come true.”
Hey Doc delivered Tony McEvoy his first Group 1 victory since Barely A Moment took out the 2004 edition of the VRC Sires Produce Stakes and he was delighted to have returned to the top of the racing mountain.
McEvoy was also quick to pay credit to the ride of Currie and he revealed that the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) could be the next target for Hey Doc.
“This is what we do it for,” McEvoy said.
“I am just very proud of the horse, proud of my staff and it is great for Luke.
“He had the gun run and barrier one is so important because he didn’t have to come around a horse.
“Luke held the barrier and the horse was a touch keen for a few strides, but he came back under him.
“It was a tremendous ride and he ran the mile out strongly.
“Three-year-olds profile pretty well for the Doncaster and we will consider that, but this was his goal for the Autumn and he did the job.”
Prized Icon hit the line strongly to finish second, while Snitzon added plenty of value to the trifecta in third.