Our Valdivia has stamped himself as a serious 2016 Darwin Cup contender with a typically smart performance for success in the Metric Mile (1600m) at Fannie Bay Racecourse over the weekend.
Formerly trained by prominent Victorian horseman Mike Moroney, Our Valdivia has found exceptional form since being sold and transferred to the care of the Alice Springs-based Lisa Lefoe, and was seeking his third-consecutive race win when lining up for the Metric Mile.
Jumping from the gates well, regular hoop Paul Denton steered the Don Eduardo gelding forward and took a handy position and settled in prime position on the heels of the Metric Mile’s early leaders; producing a strong turn of foot in the final straight to hit the line close to two lengths in the clear of closest rival Whistle Stop.
Part-owner Greg Stewart told NT News that the team has been thrilled with the class displayed and results posted by Our Valdivia this time, and are confident he can lay another good account for himself in the 2016 Darwin Cup.
“It was a very exciting result for us,” Stewart said.
“We were a bit concerned coming to the turn but his stamina kicked in and he was able to pull away.”
“The owners in this horse are spread right around the country, including some from the eastern seaboard — they are all thrilled about the win.”
Our Valdivia has been a strong performer throughout his entire racing career since debuting in the spring of 2013; posting seven wins and a further nine minors through a total of thirty-one competitive starts.
Debuting for Lefoe ninth in the Red Centre Chief Minister’s WFA (1600m) on April 23rd, Our Valdivia progressed to third in the Sky Racing Handicap (2000m) less than two weeks later.
Arriving in Darwin for fifth in the Pace Insurance Handicap (1300m) on June 18th, Our Valdivia returned to winning form in the Hot 100 Friends Handicap (1600m); repeating the dose in the Bridge Toyota Cup (1600m) in his only other start prior to the Metric Mile.
Our Valdivia has firmed into 2016 Darwin Cup odds of $7 with Ladbrokes.com.au, to remain tied on the fourth line of betting with Whistle Stop.