The Victoria Derby awaits the Mick Price trained three year old Moonovermanhattan following his win in the Group 2 $200,000 Dilmah Exceptional Teas Vase (2040m) at Moonee Valley today.
Price will be looking to win his first Group 1 $1.5m AAMI Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington next week with Moonovermanhattan after the grey colt was strong through the line at the end of the 2040m today.
Winning rider Craig Newitt rode a positive race and had the three year old travelling sweetly on the speed before forging clear on the home turn to score a comfortable win.
Newitt and Price collected their second feature race win on the two day Cox Plate weekend after winning the Group 1 $1m Sportingbet Manikato Stakes (1200m) with sprinting star Lankan Rupee at last night’s Moonee Valley meeting.
Price regards the Moonee Valley Vase as a great form line for the Victoria Derby but said 2500m is always the unknown factor.
“He’s a good looking horse, he stands over a bit of ground. He is a big clean winded colt, he’s got a lovely temperament on him, he is very sound, he had a good two weeks,” Price said.
“I think this race is a good form race for the VRC Derby. I am really looking forward to it and I think he will relax.”
“If you put him in the Derby with cover he would get behind a horse and go to sleep.”
“He has a hell of a lot of things going for him, he just has to get the 2500m.”
Moonovermanhattan was sent out as a $6 chance following his last start seventh to Shooting To Win in the Group 1 $1m BECK Caulfield Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield two weeks ago.
Runner up, the lightly raced Atmosphere ($4.80), also put in a great Victoria Derby trial making up plenty of ground from midfield while third placegetter Go Indy Go ($6.50) was doing her best work at the finish, stamping her claims as a top Crown Oaks chance.
The Mark Kavanagh trained Chivalry was sent out the $4.60 favourite and after settling midfield tried hard in the straight to finish fifth.