South Australian raider Captain Duffy has posted a big upset this afternoon; winning the Group 3 Geelong Classic (2200m) and stamping himself as a legitimate Victoria Derby contender.
Captain Duffy was sent off a $31 chance of success this afternoon, but did his chances of winning the Geelong Classic no harm when jumping well and taking an ideal position in transit on the heels of early leaders Theanswermyfriend and Back To The Bowler.
Settling into a good rhythm over the back straight, jockey Noel Callow elected to peel the King Cugat colt off the fence and took up the running approaching the final bend; a decision that would prove pivotal in the success.
Hugging the rails rounding onto the final straight, Captain Duffy poked into clear running with three lengths on his rivals and continued to open the gap; sustaining a strong-enough run to beat Hollywood Mo and Pretty Punk to the line.
Callow had never partnered Captain Duffy prior to the Geelong Classic this afternoon, but the hoop was thrilled with the feel offered up by the three-year-old, and is confident that he will enjoy another step up in trip.
“He can stay,” Callow said after the race.
“I’ve never been on his back but from 16, I spoke to Phillip this morning and the plan was to go forward without using much gas.
“I thought of going hard but I didn’t get there on my terms. I just waited for something for something and it looked like Dwayne was going to look quicker and I was going to slot in.
“I sat for a little bit longer and I made my move early without doing anything, I just put myself in the race because if I went later everyone would go with me.
“I went early, rested and he gave a good kick in the straight. He didn’t have the best run, but he can stay!”
In being crowned the 2016 Geelong Classic winner, Captain Duffy has extended his record to two wins through only eight competitive starts.