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The $1million Vodafone New Zealand Derby preview


The $1million Group 1 Vodafone New Zealand Derby is tomorrow and it's anyone's guess as to who might take it out. We've taken a look at the field to help you on your way to punting success!

The race favourite is Surely Sacred after his mighty win in the Avondale Guineas, also at Ellerslie, last start. He is out of a mare called Not Sure and whilst his breeding has punters not sure if he will have the stamina to stay the distance, he is the class horse of the race.

Prior to the upset in the Avondale Guineas, the favourite was Cutadeel. Trained by last year’s winning trainers, Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman, he will look to put that disappointment behind him tomorrow. The master trainers also saddle up The Chosen One and Bobby Dee in the race.

Now if you are bringing the kids along to the races you may have no option but to back Sponge Bob for them. Don’t be fooled by his cute name, he brings good form into the race and could take home the “Krabby Burgers”.

Ex-pat Kiwi, and champion trainer, Chris Waller is sending two horses (Nobu & Botti) to his homeland for the race while he cheers home Winx to her 23rd Group 1 victory in Sydney (hopefully!). He will be looking to dine out on a win with Nobu the best of his chances.

The Crown Prosecutor may have to get involved if that horse wins for trainer Stephen Marsh, but it wouldn’t be a surprise to see his other runner Vernanme victorious, he is the second favourite for the race.

This year’s field will be led out by cult hero, Gingernuts, the winner of the 2017 Vodafone New Zealand Derby for Te Akau Racing. This year the tangerine army have two chances with In a Twinkling and Pries De Fer. The race will also set the scene for Jamie Richard’s attempt at five million dollar races in a row here at Ellerslie.

Swords could be drawn if Swords Drawn wins at big odds as he is still a maiden. Forget his last run where he was held up badly and had no luck. He is the horse at big odds for those brave enough to go to war with him.

The dress theme may be black and white, but the winner of this year’s race isn’t that simple. Good luck finding the winner, it is in there somewhere.

Make sure you're oncourse to witness the Vodafone New Zealand Derby race run live this time around. Get tickets here.


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1st - Gino Severini - Michael McNab - He won really well. He deserved that. 2nd - The Mitigator - Troy Harris - Good run in front. Only collared late in the piece. 3rd - Sultan Of Swing - Taiki Yanag

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