Perth fillies Arcadia Dream and First Impressions will need plenty of luck from wide barriers in the Group 1 $500,000 South Australian Derby (2500m) at Morphettville on Saturday.
Prominent West Australian owner Bob Peters knows his two fillies are facing a tough task with Arcadia Dream set to jump from barrier fourteen and First Impressions coming out of gate nine.
“We just needed to draw a barrier. If we’d drawn three or four we’d be much happier about it. But drawn where they are, it’s pretty hard,” Peters told The Advertiser.
“You can’t get in and you’re just stuck. Then you’re trying to sprint from the back and you can’t make up that much ground. And we’ve got the colts to worry about this week, too.”
Peters’ tough staying filly Delicacy was able to win both the Group 1 $400,000 Schweppes Oaks (registered as Australasian Oaks) (2000m) at Morphettville and the South Australian Derby last year.
Peters gave Arcadia Dream and First Impressions a chance to replicate the deeds of Delicacy but both fillies finished out of a place in the Australasian Oaks a fortnight ago.
Arcadia Dream made up plenty of ground in the straight to finish fifth behind Abbey Marie and First Impressions also made up some ground from the back to finish eighth.
Peters said trainer Grant Williams is happy with the way the two fillies have come through their tough Oaks run and gave the all clear for them to take on the colts and geldings in the Derby.
“We waited right up until acceptance time to make sure they were OK,” Peters said.
“They’ve been quite good this week, considering everything.
“They’re only three once and there are only so many Group 1s they can run in in their life. That’s why they’re running.
“They’re here and there’s not much else for them to do.
“Arcadia Dream is the superior of the two … but the barrier really couldn’t get much worse. She drew the outside last week and she’s almost on the outside this time. It doesn’t seem fair, does it?”
Apprentice Harry Coffey takes over on Arcadia Dream from William Pike who was on board the filly in the Australasian Oaks as well as when she won the Group 2 $400,000 Schweppes W.A.T.C. Derby (2400m) at Ascot in Perth on April 16.
And Perth jockey Glenn Smith sticks with First Impressions following her eighth in the Australasian Oaks and the pair also combined for a win in the Group 3 $250,000 Kirin Megumi W.A. Oaks (2400m) at Ascot on April 2.
Arcadia Dream is the most fancied of the two Perth fillies in the South Australian Derby at $10 with Ladbrokes.com.au while First Impressions is marked as one of the outsiders of the field at $41.
The Mick Kent trained Charlevoix heads the market order at $3.70 ahead of Darren Weir’s Howard Be Thy Name at $5 and VRC St Leger winner Cool Chap at $5.50.
South Australian Derby market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $3.70 Charlevoix, $5 Howard Be Thy Name, $5.50 Cool Chap, $7 Tarquin, $10 Arcadia Dream, $16 Etymology, $17 Sacred Eye, $19 Royal Rumble, $26 Bullish Stock, $34 Manhattan Boss, Mail It In, Rong Door Reggie, Ascot Red, $41 First Impressions, $61 Tuff Bickie, $151 Dropped.