Allan's day of reckoning
CHAMPION trainer Ivan Allan is set for one of the biggest 24 hours of his racing career - even by his own exalted standards.
The man who has bought and owned Classic winners in three countries will wake in the early hours of this morning to hear how his Newmarket-trained colt, Citadeed, runs in the Kentucky Derby. Allan must then supervise potential champion Mr Vitality for his crack at the end-of-season sprint championship, the Chairman's Prize, which is the highlight of this afternoon's programme at Sha Tin.
Yesterday Allan said: 'I expect Citadeed to run one hell of a good race or a shocker. I reckon he'll be in the first four or five or in the last two or three. I just get the feeling there won't be any in between.' The Kentucky Derby is run over 2,000 metres on dirt and Pat Eddery was adamant that the son of Shadeed was looking for farther after riding him into third behind the French colt, Diffident, in the Free Handicap over 1,400 metres at Newmarket's Rowley Mile. 'He's a good judge and I hope he's right,' added Allan who has booked Eddie Maple for the ride. Citadeed has drawn widest of all in stall 19. 'I would love to be there but I must be a trainer first and foremost and be here for the Chairman's Prize.' Allan's Mr Vitality has the best form of any horse ever to come and race in the territory, having been second in the Group One Blue Diamond Stakes and fourth in the Golden Slipper as a two-year-old in Australia.
'Normally I don't care which of my horses wins when I have more than one in a big race but I have to say that this time I'm really hoping Mr Vitality wins,' Allan admitted.
Meanwhile the Hong Kong-owned filly Our Marquise showed she is out of the top drawer with a sensational five-length rout of her opposition in the Group Two Sedgwick Classic over a mile at Morphettville yesterday.
She was watched by joint-owner Malcolm Glenn. A delighted Glenn said yesterday: 'It was an effortless win. She led all the way and looked very, very good.'