Inverell ignites Derby dream

OTI Racing’s association with fledgling trainer Clayton Douglas started perfectly as Victoria Derby prospect Inverell won his maiden on debut at Sale on Sunday.

Inverell, a three-year-old gelding by Shocking, was acquired by OTI Racing from New Zealand after contesting two trials, runner-up in his final New Zealand trial over 1050 metres at Avondale on a heavy (10) surface on June 15.

Douglas’ partner Jamie Kah rode Inverell in his first Australian trial, when third at Cranbourne on August 9, and remained aboard for his 1.75-length win at Sale over 1429 metres as a well-supported $2.45 favourite.

“Both Clayton and Jamie were impressed, they’ve only had the horse eight or nine weeks and they’ve done a remarkably good job to take him from the trial in New Zealand through to yesterday,” OTI Racing’s managing director Terry Henderson said.

“After he trialled at Cranbourne a few weeks ago Clayton said ‘I think this horse is pretty good’. He then had another jumpout and he was fine so they did expect him to run well yesterday and he did.”

Douglas intends to prepare Inverell for the $75,000 Penfolds Victoria Derby Trial (1800m) at Flemington on September 22 which will help assess his suitability for the $2 million classic over 2500 metres on October 30.

“On what we saw yesterday, he was still green and has a fair bit to learn,” Henderson said.

“We took the blinkers off from the trial and put the nose roll on for the race which enabled him to race a little less aggressively.

“When he was under pressure like he was at the 500-metre mark and still finish off like that, it’s a very good sign.”

Entries for the Victoria Derby will close on Tuesday, October 5 with a $1,000 first payment required.

To view the article in full on, written by Carl Di Lorio, click here.