Hong Kong bound Shocking Luck has been installed the early favourite for the Group 3 $150,000 Mullins Lawyers Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) at Eagle Farm on Saturday.
The Stephen Autridge and Jamie Richards trainer Kiwi three year old Shocking Luck heads the market order at $3.10 at Ladbrokes.com.au just ahead of the Victoria Derby winner Prized Icon at $3.70 and the Eagle Farm trained Order Again at $5.50.
Shocking Luck was beaten a nose at his first start on Australian soil in a 1500m Class 3 at Ipswich on May 1 but improved dramatically when stepped up in distance to win the Group 3 $125,000 Mittys Rough Habit Plate (2000m) at Doomben on May 13.
But Shocking Luck is only due to have two more starts in Australia in the Grand Prix Stakes and in the Group 1 $600,000 Channel 7 Queensland Derby (2400m) at Eagle Farm on June 10 before heading off to race in Hong Kong for new owner Doctor Phillip Mak.
“David Ellis sold this horse to Phillip Mak in Hong Kong and the intention is to run him in the Grand Prix and Derby before he heads overseas,” co-trainer Jamie Richards told AAP.
“He’s a big skinny New Zealand horse with a stayer’s action and we always felt he would come into his own once he stepped up to 2000 metres.”
“He ran realty well in the Waikato Guineas back home and we thought he looked like a good Queensland Derby horse.”
Shocking Luck showed his class and his liking for a middle distance with a half length second to Wyndspelle in the Group 2 NZ$100,000 Darci Brahma Waikato Guineas (2000m) at Te Rapa in New Zealand on February 4.
Top Kiwi jockey Opie Bosson has ridden Shocking Luck at his two Australian starts and gets the ride again in the Grand Prix Stakes.
Shocking Luck will get every opportunity to make it two wins in a row from barrier three in the in the field that has already been reduced to fourteen runners following the early scratchings of Chris Waller’s Sizzling Bullet and the Jason Coyle trained Valentino Rossa.
The James Cummings trained Prized Icon was beaten a nose last start by France in the $400,000 Inglis 3yo Guineas (1400m) at Scone’s Metropolitan meeting on May 13 and has drawn barrier five with Blake Shinn taking over the reins from Glyn Schofield.
The Brian Smith trained Order Again will carrying the hopes of the locals in the Grand Prix Stakes from barrier seven with regular rider Larry Cassidy aboard again.