Mongolian Wolf will head towards the 2017 Queensland Derby after he made his Australian racing debut with an impressive victory in the Frank Packer Plate at Royal Randwick this afternoon.
There was plenty of speed in the early stages of the Frank Packer Plate and Brenton Avdulla elected to settle Mongolian Wolf just behind the leading group, while Acatour was second last and struggling.
Avdulla got Mongolian Wolf off the rail coming into the straight and he responded well when asked for an extra effort to fight off both Veladero and Screamarr to take out the Frank Packer Plate.
Mongolian Wolf continued the dominance that New Zealand-trained three-year-olds have had during the 2017 Spring Racing Carnival – following the Group 1 victories of Gingernuts, Jon Snow and Bonnevall – and Avdulla believes that Mongolian Wolf will be a genuine contender in the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m).
“You are full of confidence when you are riding a Darren Weir-trained horse and I am very close with Australian Bloodstock,” Avdulla said.
“They have taken me all over the world.
“I haven’t ridden a City winner in a while and he Luke (Murrell from Australian Bloodstock) gave me a couple of pointers along with my manager.
“It is great to ride a winner for loyal supporters.
“The Kiwis have dominated our Carnival and I was always confident that I was on the right horse.
“The track is racing a bit inconsistent and I got too a part of the track that I didn’t want to get into.
“He is a nice horse and I think that he is in for a good prep in Queensland.”
Acatour was extremely well-backed in the lead-up to the Frank Packer Plate, but he was never able to get into the race and he was beaten a long way from home.
Veladero was gallant in defeat in second, while Screamarr ran well to round out the placings.