Victoria Derby winner Preferment will kick off his Australian Derby campaign when he lines up in the Group 2 $200,000 Blackwoods CRC Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on Saturday.
Preferment will be having his first run since winning the Group 1 $1.5m AAMI Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington during the 2014 Melbourne Spring Carnival and while trainer Chris Waller doesn’t expect him to figure in the finish, he would like to see him winding up over the final stages.
“I just want him to pass a couple in the straight and they will be horses that are struggling, I know that,” Waller said.
“It will just be a way to get a bit of fitness into him and just sharpen him up a little bit for the mile in two weeks, then third up in the Rosehill Guineas and fourth up grand final Derby.”
The Group 1 $2m BMW Australian Derby (2400m) at Randwick on April 4 is Preferment’s Autumn Carnival grand final and Waller wants to have the Zabeel colt peaking for that assignment.
Waller is pleased with Preferment’s Autumn preparation but admits that he will need distances of 1600m and beyond before he will be able to produce his best.
“He is good but he will need a mile and further,” Waller said.
“So Why is he running Saturday? He just simply needs a run.”
“He will be running over a mile in two weeks times and he can’t go running first up over 2000m “
After the Hobartville Stakes Preferment will head to the Group 1 $600,000 Royal Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Randwick on March 7 followed by the Group 1 $500,000 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) at Rosehill a fortnight later.
Then that will leave another two weeks leading up to the Australian Derby on the first day of ‘The Championships’.
While Preferment is on the second line of betting at $7 for the Australian Derby with Ladbrokes.com.au, he is well out of contention for the Hobartville Stakes at $51.
Waller will also saddle up Delectation ($8.50) and Kermadec ($10) and will be hoping that they can figure strongly in the finish.
Both three year olds resumed in the Group 3 $150,000 Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on February 7 with Delectation getting run down by Scissor to finish second while Kermadec made ground from the back to run into fourth place.
Caulfield Guineas winner Shooting To Win heads the market order at $4.20 for the Hobartville Stakes ahead of Scissor Kick at $5.50, Hallowed Crown and Panzer Division at $7, Sweynesse at $8.50 with Delectation.