The 2013 Victoria Derby odds received a shake up with the John O’Shea trained Savvy Nature elevated to outright favourite for the Group 1 $1.5m AAMI Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Although Savvy Nature didn’t draw perfectly and will jump from gate eleven if the two emergencies don’t gain a start, the Savabeel gelding has drawn inside main rival Complacent who is likely to jump from fourteen in the final field of sixteen after coming up with sixteen in the original draw which included two emergencies.
O’Shea was hoping for a change of luck at the barrier draw after finishing second and third to Complacent at their last two meetings after jumping from wide gates while the Peter Snowden trained colt had the luxury of the rails.
Savvy Nature was runner up to Complacent in the Group 3 $200,000 PJ’s Irish Pub Parramatta Gloaming Stakes (1800m) at Rosehill on September 28 before finishing third to the Snowden colt in the Group 1 $400,000 Moet & Chandon Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on October 12.
The reshaped Victoria Derby odds has Savvy Nature marked at $4.80 while Complacent, with Kerrin McEvoy to ride, has eased out to $5 to make it back to Group 1 victories.
Locally trained three year old Polanski has come in for some solid support after coming up with the inside gate and is now a $7 chance just in front of Criterion at $9, who also has come up with an awkward barrier at fourteen, but likely to jump from twelve.
Snowden will saddle up three runners in the Victoria Derby with San Diego (Steven Arnold) a $7 chance from gate six and Tupac Amaru (Craig Newitt) at $17 from gate eight.
While O’Shea holds a slight advantage over Snowden’s colt from the jump, he still realises that it will be tough to turn around the results from their clashes in Sydney.
“One of the first horses I saw at the track this morning was Complacent and he looks in great order,” O’Shea told The Daily Telegraph.
“He is extremely talented, Peter will have him trained to the minute and he will be well ridden and well prepared.
“So, we realise we have to step up to the plate to win.”
Savvy Nature, with James McDonald to ride again, goes into Saturday’s Victoria Derby on a winning note following an impressive three lengths win last Saturday at Moonee Valley in the Group 2 $220,000 Mitchelton Wines Vase (2040m), traditionally a great lead up race for the Derby.