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Image: Steve Hart
Ben Hayes fancies Muraaqeb as an Epsom outsider after his strong win in the Shoot Out Mile at Randwick

Co-trainer Ben Hayes fancies Muraaqeb as an Epsom outsider after his strong win in the Shoot Out Mile at Randwick.

The four-year-old entire ($6.50) was unchallenged in the 1600m race as he blazed to front just past the 400m and stayed there to beat Another Dollar by 1-1/4 lengths.

The victory put Muraaqeb, trained by young Hayes, his father David and uncle Tom Dabernig, back in the winner’s stall for the first time this preparation after a sixth and third at Caulfield in the past month.

“Last time he raced here, he won over a mile,” Hayes said.

“It just looked like a suitable race for him.”

Hayes credited leading jockey James McDonald for the tactics that resulted in Muraaqeb’s win over favourite Another Dollar ($4.60) and Goodfella ($11).

“I have to give James McDonald all the credit for (the ride),” he said.

“I gave him full reign. It was all his decision to run him well forward.”

Hayes believes Muraaqeb can give the Group One $1 million Epsom Handicap a shake over the same distance on September 29.

“We might look at running him as a lightweight chance for the Epsom,” he said.

“I think he’s definitely a chance to sneak in with a light weight.”

 
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