National Derby

Victorians Headed North For Group 1 Heats

By Jeff Collerson
They may not have the high profile of some of Victoria's big name nominations but their trainers give Slingshot Jonesy and Idolize great chances in their National Derby and National Futurity Heats at Wentworth Park on Friday night.

Emily Azzopardi has Nyah Nyah Flyer, Slingshot Jonesy and Speak Up in the Ladbrokes Derby series while fellow Victorian conditioner Peter Presutto has Dynamic Prince and High End in that event along with Idolize and Chic in the Ladbrokes Futurity qualifiers .

Azzopardi revealed she had brought each of her classic hopes to Sydney for box-to-box trials at Wentworth Park and said: "They all went well but Slingshot Jonesy looks my best chance because he has been lucky with the box draw, coming up with the rails in Heat four.

"There is nothing between him and Speak Up but Slingshot Jonesy is quicker early.

"In two recent trials they ran identical times but while Speak Up is a strong finisher who could become a good middle distance dog, he lacks the early pace of Slingshot Jonesy.

"As Speak Up has drawn box five in Heat five so he will need to come out cleanly and have a bit of luck in running but if that happens he has the ability to run a good race.

"Nyah Nyah Flyer has won three from five starts but is still learning and he has drawn awkwardly in box eight in Heat one so might have the job ahead of him.''


Peter Presutto also made the trip from Victoria to trial his Derby and Futurity entries at Wentworth Park and was especially pleased with how well Idolized performed.

"They each had box-to-box trials but Idolize went the best, posting splits of 5.36, 13.70 and 17.85,'' Presutto said.

"She has box three in Heat three of the Futurity and if she reproduces those sectional times Idolize should be in front for a long way.

"Dynamic Prince has box six in Heat two of the Derby and he is much faster than High End, who has drawn box seven in Heat three.

"Dynamic Prince broke 18sec for his third split when I trialled him at Wenty and while box six is no help in what looks a pretty strong field, he does have a vacant alley in five.

"High End is boxed nicely in seven but when he trialled he missed the jump badly and only ran first and third splits of 5.85 and 18.30.''


Christine Proctor was caretaker trainer for Victorian duo Jeff Britton and Angela Langton when she won the 2019 National Futurity with Circle Of Dreams and will handle several of their runners at Wentworth Park on Friday.

Proctor's husband Alan gives Weblec Raider (box one, Heat one of the Derby), Boston Garden (box one, Heat six) and their Futurity representative Weblec Gem (box two, Heat one) good chances.

"Jeff has a big opinion of Boston Garden and if he gets away cleanly from his ideal rails draw he should go close to winning,'' Proctor said.

Heat four is by far strongest of the Futurity races with Rare Talent, Ties That Bind, Yuko Girl and She's A Pearl clashing.

She's A Pearl (pictured), who has drawn box six, has trialled sensationally at Wentworth Park since joining the Jodie Lord kennels and will be favourite after winning her past six races at headquarters.

Her wins include slashing 29.62 and 29.68 performances encompassing flying initial splits of 5.33 and 5.37.


Best Bet Slingshot Jonesy (race 4)

Best Value Idolize (race 9)

Quaddie race 5 - 3, 6, 5

Race 6 - 1, 4

Race 7 - 6, 7, 2

Race 8 - 7, 2, 6

$20 for 37.03%