Moroney Rests Hopes On Queensland Derby Duo

Trainer Michael Moroney will be looking to execute sweet revenge when he lines up two of his young stable stars in the Group 1 Queensland Derby at Eagle Farm this Saturday.

Michael Moroney

Michael Moroney has two horses lining up in the Group 1 Queensland Derby. Photo by Taron Clarke

Moroney will accept with both Rhythm To Spare and Ali Vitalfor the $500,000 race in the hope he can finally claim the race that has eluded him for so long.

The trainer had Queensland Derby favourite, Eskimo Queen, in the 2007 edition of the race.

However, the then three-year-old dislodged her rider 1,000 metres from home, causing jockey Greg Childs serious injury.

“I suppose it was always a race I felt that got away and it would be great to win it back,” Moroney said.

“It was just one of those things that happens, she (Eskimo Queen) was going really well at the time.”

While Moroney feels that both of his horses are capable of winning the Queensland Derby, he believes that Ali Vital may have the edge over the 2,500 metre distance.

“Ali Vital will definitely run the distance, he’s an out-and-out stayer that is probably six months away from his best, whereas Rhythm To Spare is probably a bit stronger and a bit more brilliant at this stage,” he said.

“Rhythm To Spare is by Pins so there’s always a bit of a question mark over whether he will stay 2400 metres but he’s out of a Zabeel mare and he gets his stoutness from there.”

Ali Vital has won two of his six race starts and has earned moe than $33,000 in prize money during his career.

The three-year-old won his last start in the Ascend Sales Handicap by three lengths last start and will be contesting Group competition for the first time in the Queensland Derby.

Meanwhile, Rhythm To Spare is coming off a second placing in the Group 3 Grand Prix Stakes behind Hawkspur.


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