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Waterhouse Wants 2500m Vic Derby & More Staying Races

Wednesday, 28th October 2009

Leading trainer Gai Waterhouse “says not enough is being done to promote stayers in Australian racing & has slammed those who want to reduce the Victoria Derby distance,” reported The Herald-Sun. There is a push “almost every year to have the Derby distance reviewed, with many trainers feeling it is too tough for immature 3YOs”. But Waterhouse (who has Viking Legend in Saturday's $1.5 million Gr1 Victoria Derby) says the race should stay at its traditional 2500m distance rather than be shortened to 2000m, declaring: “We have enough short races - it makes you sick. You have plenty of races at 2000m, 1600m & less through the spring, like the Caulfield Guineas, Mackinnon Stakes & Emirates Stakes. But there are not enough races at 2000m or further. Australian racing has to do more for stayers. They have to cater for these staying 3YOs. They have to keep the Derby at its traditional distance.” Waterhouse noted her own star 3YO Manhattan Rain (2nd in last weekend’s Gr1 Cox Plate over 2040m) was not entered for the Victoria Derby at the request of the colt's owners, adding: “I love the Derby. I wanted to run him, but the owners didn't & I understand that.”

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