Quarterbar snuck in as the final entry in the 2011 Queensland Derby and trainer Michael Moroney is hoping he can sneak under the radar again to score a surprise win in the race.
The colt looked like being a major player when he travelled up to Brisbane and he ran second at Eagle Farm across a slow track to start his winter campaign.
From there he entered the Rough Habit Plate for the first real test of abilities against the local talent.
It was a disaster and despite drawing gate three he could only manage 11th nearly six lengths away from the winner.
This left him in a precarious position and Moroney entered him into a mid-week race at Doomben to try and earn the required prize money.
It was a move which paid off and after winning the race by four lengths Quarterbar had done enough to get his crack at a Group 1.
Many assumed the key to his last start win was the addition of blinkers but surprisingly Moroney will remove them for the Derby.
“We put the blinkers back on him and found that he raced a little erratically. We have just found that he is a different horse if we leave them off.” Moroney said.
Moroney says the horse is in top order and even though the barrier draw didn’t go exactly to plan he’s content to push forward from barrier 14 and settle somewhere near the pace.
“He looks absolutely sensational,” he said.
“He’ll certainly be up on the pace and he’ll definitely get the distance.”
The majority of Moroney’s horses seem to be adaptable to most track surfaces and he expects Quarterbar to be no different in the event of poor weather.
“I can’t see rain having an effect on him,” he said.
Chad Ormsby took over from Larry Cassidy for the last start win and he’ll retain the ride in the Queensland Derby.
Online bookmakers currently list Quarterbar as a $21 hope for the race with current betting favourite Shootoff leading the way.