Former North Island galloper Dr Velocious may have earned himself a tilt at the Group 3 Christchurch Casino New Zealand Cup (3200m) after providing Singapore-born apprentice Yong Chew with his first victory at Riccarton on Saturday.
The twenty-four-year-old Chew transferred south to Riccarton trainer Lance Robinson after spending time in the North Island and has had just four raceday rides this season. Despite his inexperience Chew kept his cool when he was trapped three-wide in the early running aboard the Haradasun five-year-old who did his early racing for owner and breeder Terry Lines from the Shaun and Emma Clotworthy stable at Byerley Park.
Chew guided Dr Velocious to the centre of the track in the run home where he maintained a strong gallop to claim victory by threequarters of a length in the Christchurch Casino Winter Classic (2000m), one of the main supporting races on Group 3 Winning Edge Presentations Winter Cup (1600m) day.
Co-trainer Kelvin Tyler was delighted with the ride and the performance of his charge who made it two wins on end after he was successful over 2200m at Ashburton at his last start. “It was a great effort and I’m absolutely thrilled with how he is going,” Tyler said. “Winning on top of the ground like that surprised me a bit he did most of the work in the race, out three-wide, but he had no weight on his back with the 4kg claim. “I told the boy to try and make the top ones carry their weight and he did a super job. “That was his first win so you can imagine he was pretty excited after the race.”
Tyler has a good relationship with owner Terry Lines, having trained a number of horses for him and was thrilled he could make it two wins on end for the well-known breeding identity. “Terry sent him down to me and he has been going super for him,” Tyler said. “Terry puts a lot into the game so he deserves to get some back like today.”
Tyler will now map out a programme for his charge towards the New Zealand Cup in November as he believes he is a natural stayer in the making. “I have no doubt he will get two miles on his ear so we’d be silly not to take a look at the Cup in November,” he said. “We will have to back off him at some stage but while he is going well and keeps improving then that will be our goal.”