3YO Stayers Series winner A Man to Match begins the path to the Queensland Derby at Eagle Farm.
Promising three-year-olds Trusty Lad and A Man To Match will revive their rivalry when they take the first steps towards the Group One Queensland Derby at Eagle Farm.
The pair will use Saturday’s Three-Year-Old Handicap (1400m) as a Derby launching pad after sharing the honours when they clashed in the summer 3YO Stayers series.
A Man To Match relegated Trusty Lad to second in a heat of the series at Doomben but Trusty Lad got his revenge winning the final with A Man To Match third.
They had met one other time with A Man To Match finishing just in front of Trusty Lad when third in a Doomben race.
Trainers Tony Gollan (A Man To Match) and Matt Kropp (Trusty Lad) were both thankful for the 3YO stayers series because it helped boost their horses prize money making it easier to get into the stakes races during the winter.
“A Man To Match has $124,000 which is a big start to getting into the winter races,” Gollan said.
“Whether he is up to them we will see but he should get a chance to show what he can do.”
A Man To Match is a High Chaparral gelding who is raced by Graham and Linda Huddy who have already won the Victoria Derby (Preferment)and Australian Derby (Shoot Out).
Kropp bought Trusty Lad, who is by French Derby winner Reliable Man, from the New Zealand Sales with one thing in mind.
“We were after a potential Derby horse and hopefully he will measure up,” he said.
Kropp has taken the blinkers off Trusty Lad for Saturday’s race while A Man To Match has been gelded during a break.
Both horses are expected to take the traditional path to the Derby through races such as the Rough Habit Plate and Grand Prix Stakes.