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Britton hoping to ‘Do It’ in Derby

While Jeff Britton has two frontline contenders in the Group 1 National Derby at Sydney’s Wentworth Park on Saturday night, he says first reserve Do It would be his best chance if he could sneak into the field.

Britton is chasing a fourth Derby after winning the race in 1998 with Mepunga Blaze, which he trained with his father Allan, Pacific Sky in 2004 and Axel Footluce in 2019.

The prolific Anakie mentor has two confirmed starters, in recent Group 1 Silver Chief runner-up Tyler Durden (box 1), TAB’s $3.70 second elect, and $5 fancy Weblec Jet (box 7).

Do It is also a $5 chance, despite requiring a scratching to gain a start.

“You haven’t heard of any scratchings!” Britton quipped.

“Do It is probably the best of the lot of them; down here he’s the fastest anyway.

“I reckon Weblec Jet is a couple of lengths behind Do It and Tyler Durden has really improved in his last couple of runs.

“When Mepunga Blaze won the Derby it was worth $100,000 and then it went down to $40,000 when Pacific Sky won. Pacific Sky’s owner Jarrod Sharp reckons he missed out then and he’s the owner of Do It, so it looks like he might miss out again!”

Weblec Jet made a dynamic Wentworth Park debut with a scorching 29.79s heat victory, second quickest of the seven run-offs, while Tyler Durden, named after a character from the movie Fight Club, was only beaten a length in 29.71s by fastest qualifier Zipping Moose.

Both are sons of champion 2015 National Derby hero Fernando Bale, as is Do It, which was narrowly beaten in 29.91s by fellow Victorian Eagles Nest Egg, prepared by Brendan Pursell.

“Weblec Jet isn’t badly boxed out in seven,” said Briton.

“He’s not a mad crasher and has a little bit of pace. It depends on what happens on the first turn. If he’s there on-pace he’ll be running home strongly.

“Tyler Durden has the red and you’d take it anytime. But that mightn’t have been the case four or five starts ago because he wanted to get off.

“In his last couple of starts, including the Silver Chief, he’s started to go underneath dogs so I don’t mind him drawn there and hopefully he can finish in the first three.”

In 2019 Britton won the Derby with Axel Footluce and National Futurity courtesy of Circle Of Dreams, which were both based in NSW for their respective campaigns, and he hopes the same formula will pay a $75,000 dividend on Saturday.

“We did the same thing two years ago when I was over in Ireland and it worked out pretty well,” Britton said.

“Axel Footluce stayed with Chris Carl and Alan Proctor had Circle Of Dreams and this time Chris has Tyler Durden and Alan has Weblec Jet.”

The National Derby is race 7 on Saturday’s massive Wentworth Park card, which also features the Group 1 Paws Of Thunder, Group 1 National Futurity and Group 2 Summer Distance Plate.

Jarrod Sharp had a mural made of his 2004 Derby winner – Pacific Sky. Sharp also owns second reserve Do It in this years Derby. 

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About Gerard Guthrie - One of Australia's leading greyhound racing journalists since 2000 with the Greyhound Recorder and now with Greyhound Racing Victoria. Part-owner 2013 Group 1 Paws Of Thunder winner Sheikha. (The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of GRV)
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