Hey Doc has returned to winning form with a strong performance for success in the Group 3 CS Hayes Stakes (1400m) at Flemington Racecourse this afternoon.
Hey Doc returned to the races for a credible third in the Group 3 Manfred Stakes (1200m) a fortnight ago and the horse had reportedly taken plenty of benefit from the run leading into this afternoon’s race.
Jumping from the gates well, Luke Currie elected to take a sit on the Duporth gelding as Manolo Blahniq and Yulong Shengdao duked it out on pace across the back straight and approaching the bend.
Offered a clear line upon arriving at the final straight, Hey Doc’s class shone through as he quickly found the front of the field and extended to the line, returning to winning form ahead of his major campaign target; the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) in a fortnight.
Currie delivered a gem of a ride on Hey Doc to win the CS Hayes Stakes, but was quick to lay all the praise on trainer Tony McEvoy and his team, as well as the talented gelding.
“Tony and the team have done a really good job with him,” Currie said after the race.
“He came back and had a few little issues that just needed ironing out. Today he was a lot more relaxed than what he was last time.
“He was very quick out of the machines and last time I rode him here, we had the idea of going forward and there was no tempo, he was left in front and just pulled to hard.
“I was very mindful that even though he did jump quickly, I wanted to bring him back and cover him up straight away.
“That tempo was injected into the race and they kept rolling the whole way, it was just a matter of when I wanted to push the button.”
Tony McEvoy was pleased with Hey Doc’s return to winning form in the CS Hayes Stakes and believes that the horse is only improving.
“He was a beautiful yearling and he’s been a very good race horse for us,”
“First time at 1400m today – he’s a serious 1400m horse the way he travelled and quickened today, he really impressed me again.
“Luke’s got a lot of faith in him, he trusts him and he rode him beautifully and the horse came back under him.
“it was a solid tempo, but I loved his turn of foot.”
Hey Doc has posted five wins and three minors through his eleven career starts to date.