Trainer John O’Shea has no concerns that the in-form Tally will has any trouble getting the 2400m of the Group 1 $2m BMW Australian Derby at Randwick on the first day of ‘The Championships’ on Saturday.
Tally will be having his first race start in Sydney after working his way up through the classes in Victoria with wins from his last four starts, his last two at Group 2 level in the $200,000 Ladbrokes Caulfield Autumn Classic (1800m) at Caulfield on February 27 and in the Group 2 $200,000 Alister Clark Stakes (2040m) at Moonee Valley on March 18.
The Street Cry colt is yet to be tested at the 2400m but O’Shea said that the way he ran out the 2040m of the Alister Clark Stakes, he should have no worries handling the extra distance.
“I’m not too concerned about him getting the 2400m – he’s by Street Cry and his mother won at 2400m in Listed company,” O’Shea said.
“He was strong at 2040m when he won the Alister Clark.”
Even though Tally has done all of his racing in Victoria, O’Shea is confident that he will handle the Sydney way of going after having had plenty of practice since arriving at Godolphin’s New South Wales base at Agnes Banks.
“Tally is a bit of a sleeping giant. He’s done his racing in Melbourne and hasn’t been seen here in Sydney,” O’Shea said.
“He’s shown us that he’s not troubled racing the Sydney way and he’s still got improvement.”
O’Shea will also saddle up Etymology who will definitely have no trouble running out a strong 2400m after running second to Australian Derby favourite Tarzino in the 2500m Group 1 $1.5m AAMI Victoria Derby at Flemington during the 2015 Melbourne Spring Carnival.
“He finished second in the VRC Derby so he’s definitely not going to have a problem going 100m less here,” O’Shea said.
Etymology has had three runs back in preparation for the Australian Derby with O’Shea stepping him up in distance every time.
The New Approach colt kicked off his Autumn campaign with a ninth in the Group 2 $400,000 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on February 20 followed by a tenth in the Group 1 $1m Girvan Waugh Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Randwick on March 5 before his last start sixth to Tarzino in the Group 1 $600,000 Sky Racing Rosehill Guineas (2000m) at Rosehill on March 19.
O’Shea was happy with the colt’s Rosehill Guineas effort and said that he was ready to take on Tarzino again in the Australian Derby.
“At Rosehill in the Guineas he was working home nicely which showed us he was just where I want him,” O’Shea said.
“Tarzino is obviously a top colt, but I’m happy to be taking him on with our two.”
Godolphin’s number one Australia jockey James McDonald will take the mount on Tally who has drawn barrier nine while Sam Clipperton will be aboard Etymology who will jump from gate five.
The Mick Price trained Tarzino heads the Australian Derby market order at Ladbrokes.com.au at $2 with Tally on the second line of betting with Crown Oaks winner Jameka at $6.50 while Etymology is marked at $15.
Australian Derby market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $2 Tarzino, $6.50 Tally, Jameka, $9.50 Vanburgh, $15 Etymology, Torgerssen, What’s The Story, $26 Sovereign Nation, $51 Gold Ambition, Tavago, $71 Crosley Hotshot, $201 Oh So Splendid, Alfden.