Bryan Guy is confident he can farewell Eagle Way as a Group One winner of the Queensland Derby with the gelding headed to Hong Kong.
Eagle Way will have his last start for the stable at Eagle Farm on Saturday before joining his owner, leading Hong Kong trainer John Moore.
“John made it clear he was only leaving him here to win a Derby,” said trainer Guy.
“John has been very good to me and I am sure he will send me another horse soon.”
Although Eagle Way is by More Then Ready, a stallion more noted for producing sprinter-milers, Guy believes his racing style will be suited to the 2400 metres of the Derby for which he is the second favourite.
Eagle Way won three races earlier this year over 1800m and 1600m and was a strong second to Mackintosh in the Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) at Doomben.
“Eagle Way’s dam Wedgetail Eagle is by Lure and he has got his share of winners. Eagle Way has always raced like a stayer since we have had him,” Guy said.
“Early in his career he was tried only as a sprinter but really this is the distance range he should handle best.”
Tommy Berry will ride Eagle Way, taking over from regular jockey Paul Hammersley.
“It has been the hardest thing about his preparation – telling Paul he wouldn’t be riding him in the Derby,” Guy said.
“But John has had a lot of success with Tommy and wanted him on for this race.”
Guy has been one of Queensland’s leading trainers for two decades since moving from Sydney and has had many stakes winners.
However, he hasn’t won a Group One race since Ravarda took the JJ Atkins and Ryder Stakes in the mid 1990s. Guy also trained All Our Mob to win in the 1994 Stradbroke.
“It has been a while between drinks but I couldn’t be happier with Eagle Way,” he said.
“He is spot-on and we have got him to the Derby and would be disappointed if he didn’t race well.”
South Australian Derby winner Howard Be Thy Name is shading Eagle Way for favouritism with the two at $4 and $4.40 respectively with the TAB.
Article from JustHorseRacing.com.au