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Derby Tracker – Group performed 2yo vs 3yo Progressive types

by Dean Elliott.

As the earlier trends have highlighted, the 2 year-old Group 1 performers aren’t necessarily the leading Derby candidates, but not to say they can’t feature.

derby-lion-tamerAn exception to this rule was Lion Tamer, who won the NZ Champagne (1600m).

He was also a stakes winner as a 2yo before Christmas which probably just highlights what a tragedy it was to lose this gifted horse before his time.

In regards to Australian Group 1 performers as two-year-olds, it isn’t a surprise that you don’t often get those who can perform at the top level over a broad range of distances so early in your career.

We will always have exceptions to this rule, however I prefer to look at those progressive types that have strong form lines and look like they are going to develop into genuine staying types (amongst other factors).

I might entertain the two-year-old Group 1 form if, for example, a horse shows ability in a race like the Champagne Stakes (1600m).

He might already be looking for further and by the time the 3yo season comes around, this horse is being aimed at a Derby rather than a Guineas.

Savabeel was this type of 2yo that tried to do the Cox Plate – Derby double but was beaten by a very good horse (Plastered) that didn’t have a gut busting grand final seven days prior (he ran on the same day in the Vase).

Another horse that fits this profile is Criterion.

He came from last on the bend in the Champagne Stakes to only be beaten 2 lengths.

Although he could only manage 4th in the VRC Derby, he was able to return in the Spring and take out the Rosehill Guineas – ATC Derby double.

Next up we look at ‘Foundation Building / Paddock Time‘.

Article written by Dean Elliott (BDM at William Hill and Horse Racing & Breeding enthusiast)

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