Shocking Luck is Hong Kong-bound but not before he attempts to win the Queensland Derby following his emphatic win in the Group Three Rough Habit Plate at Doomben.
Shocking Luck drifted from $4.80 to $6 but was untroubled to win by 2-3/4 lengths from Order Again who was heavily backed into $3.40 equal favouritism with Veladero who was 1-3/4 lengths away third.
Although beaten in midweek company at Ipswich on May 1, Shocking Luck handled the sharp rise in grade with ease, confirming the high opinion co-trainer Jamie Richards has held in the gelding.
“He’s a big skinny New Zealand horse with a stayer’s action and we always felt he would come into his own once he stepped up to 2000 metres,” Richards said.
After his next run in the Group Three Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) at Eagle Farm on May 27, Shocking Luck will attempt to emulate Eagle Way who won last year’s Queensland Derby before going to Hong Kong where he has raced successfully.
“David Ellis sold this horse to Phillip Mak in Hong Kong and the intention is to run him in the Grand Prix and Derby before he heads overseas,” Richards said.
Any concerns Richards held for Shocking Luck on the soft track on Saturday proved unfounded.
“Hopefully the tracks continue to improve because believe me he’s a much better horse on top of the ground,” Richards said.
“All going well he can hold his form at his next two starts and there’s no reason why he can’t.”
Order Again produced an eye-catching Derby trial as trainer Brian Smith sweats on gaining a start in the blue-riband event.
The gelding earned $25,000 for finishing second but Smith is concerned his overall prize money of $62,000 won’t be enough to guarantee a Derby start.