Mick Price expects his chances of a coveted Victoria Derby win will be decided soon after the start of the $1.5 million race.
Price is yet to land a Victoria Derby but the trainer has Moonee Valley Vase winner Moonovermanhattan as one of the genuine chances in the first genuine staying test of the season for three-year-olds.
Moonovermanhattan was strong in winning the Moonee Valley Vase over 2040m last Saturday, but Price wants to see the son of Manhattan Rain get cover early in the Derby.
The trainer figures this will give him the horse his best chance to make an impact at the end of the 2500m.
“He’s got a good constitution and I’m very happy with him,” Price said.
“I suppose it just depends on whether he gets 2500 metres or not.
“I think if out of the straight the first time, we get four or five go straight across and he plonks in that spot where he can go to sleep, he can get it.
“But if he’s outside the leader doing it too hard, I think that is against his chances.”
Moonovermanhattan shares the third line of betting at $9, with Spring Champion Stakes winner Hampton Court a clear-cut favourite at $2.60.
Price’s best finish in a Victoria Derby was a second with Kempinsky in 2003 and he is hoping it’s his time to break through.
“I’ve had a second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth,” Price said.
“There’s no racing God, I know, but if there was could I ask him for a different spot? And that’s not seventh!”