Ciaron Maher wasn’t sure what he was going see from Tanker when pressure was applied to the colt in his race debut at Caulfield.
Although a little wayward, Tanker ran out a comfortable winner of the Listed Debutant Stakes (1000m) on Saturday and Maher, who trains in partnership with David Eustace, was immediately talking about the colt as a 2020 Blue Diamond and 2020 Golden Slipper contender.
Maher knew Tanker had ability and after a trial at Cranbourne on Monday applied blinkers in a bid to curb the colt’s waywardness.
Ridden by Ben Allen, Tanker ($7.50) scored a 2-1/4 length win from Euphoric Summer ($5) with Queen Of Rocks ($7) a length away third.
“We knew he was a bit raw but had a bit under the hood,” Maher said.
“When Ben half pushed the button the other day he didn’t know whether to go left, right or whatever, but there was a bit there.
“He came on from that as the young ones do and was quite impressive.
“He still had a good look around and I’ll say he’ll have a good sleep tonight, but he’ll improve so much for today”.
Tanker is from the first crop of Pride Of Dubai, the 2015 Blue Diamond Stakes winner.
Maher said he had a few of the Pride Of Dubai stock in his stable describing them as impressive types.
“They’re big strong horses,” Maher said.
“He was a ripping type himself and he’s put a bit of that substance into them.”