Good ground vital for Derby-bound colt
9 February 2016
The path to a Group One goal has to be a firm one for What’s The Story to show he can stand tall against the best of his age group.
The Savabeel colt’s road to the BMW New Zealand Derby will take in a sprint outing at Avondale on Wednesday before he steps out over more ground in preparation for the March 5 feature.
“He’s only struck one good track so far, which has been a bit disappointing,” said Stephen McKee, who prepares What’s The Story at Ardmore with Eddie Chippendale.
“The only time things have gone his way was in his first-up win – he can’t quicken on wet ground.”
What’s The Story impressed at Ruakaka in his debut victory against the older horses before he was beaten, but not disgraced, in three subsequent three-year-old events on rain-affected going.
He was fifth behind Xtravagant in the Wellington Guineas Trial, sixth to Alamer in the Listed Trevor Eagle Memorial and a last-start seventh in the Gr.2 Great Northern Guineas won by the subsequent Gr.1 Levin Classic placegetter and Gr.2 Waikato Guineas winner Rangipo.
What’s The Story will be ridden by his regular partner Sam Spratt in the Avondale Trainers’ 1400, in which they share the topweight of 60kg with fellow Derby hopeful Arbitrage.
“We were going to run him over 2100 metres last week, but he drew the outside at Ellerslie and with the rail out he would have had to work too hard,” McKee said.
“He’s capable of sprinting well and then we’ll decide whether he goes to the Avondale Guineas or a Rating 65 over 2100m.” – NZ Racing Desk.