Progressive three-year-old colt Prince Albert took a flying leap closer to the NZ Derby with a storming second at Ellerslie on Melbourne Cup Day in a strong maiden 1600 metres against older horses.
Luckless with his barrier draw of 13, and a long way back in the field, it was a patient ride from jockey Jake Bayliss.
The son of Savabeel followed the favourite through and came off his back to make up a huge amount of ground in the straight and could well have won the race if he got out slightly sooner than he did. A pleasing aspect was to see him run in amongst horses in the straight and he wasn’t afraid to take the gaps when they appeared which showed his increasing confidence.
Jake Bayliss was thrilled with his run and reported that he is a very progressive horse who is close to a win.
Trainer Stephen Marsh was similiarly pleased with his efforts. “Obviously we will wait and see how Prince Albert comes through the race before making further plans but his run indicates that the New Zealand Derby on the 2nd of March looks to be an ideal longer term target for him.” The step up to Derby distance will suit.