New Zealand colt Jon Snow gave Damian Lane his first Sydney winner and now has the chance to give the Melbourne jockey his first harbour city Group One victory in the Australian Derby.
Lane won last Saturday’s Group Two Tulloch Stakes on Jon Snow and partners the colt again in Saturday’s $2 million Derby (2400m), one of three Group One rides on the program for the in-form hoop.
The jockey will be chasing a fifth career Group One win with three of those coming in Melbourne while the other was in his home state of Western Australia in this season’s Kingston Town Classic on Stratum Star.
Lane’s other Group One rides on Saturday are last-start Group Three winner The Mission in the Sires’ Produce Stakes and Newmarket Handicap runner-up Voodoo Lad in the TJ Smith Stakes.
Jon Snow impressed Lane in the Tulloch Stakes in a performance which further enhanced the New Zealand Derby form.
Gingernuts won the New Zealand Derby (2400m) with Jon Snow third, and both have since won in Sydney with Gingernuts racing into Australian Derby favouritism with his Rosehill Guineas win.
Jon Snow is on the third line of betting as he bids to give Murray Baker, who now trains in partnerships with Andrew Forsman, his fourth Australian Derby in the past decade after Mongolian Khan (2015), It’s A Dundeel (2013) and Nom Du Jeu (2008).
“I think he’s got a great chance,” Lane said.
“He showed he can handle any conditions last start and he’s drawn barrier nine which I think will suit him.
“He’ll just stride forward and hopefully he’ll have his chance.
“Gingernuts was very impressive at his last start and my bloke has also got to back up in a week.
“We know Gingernuts is going to be off the speed, so maybe if it’s a slowly run race he’ll have a bit of an advantage.”