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Ali-Vital on Queensland Derby path

Promising gelding Ali-Vital has settled in well since his arrival in Brisbane and can hopefully earn himself a place in the Group One Queensland Derby by running a forward race at Doomben on Wednesday.

An impressive maiden winner over 1700m at his most recent outing during the Warrnambool Carnival, the son of underrated stallion Yamanin Vital steps up to 2200m in the Ascend Sales Handicap.

To be ridden by Chris Munce who will be on a high after receiving the great news this week that he has won his battle with throat cancer, Ali-Vital takes on just nine others.

"It is a small but even field," Michael Moroney said, adding that the up-and-coming bay travelled up well to Queensland and has been working nicely.

"It is his first run the right-handed way but his gallops here have been good," he said.

Closer to home we also saddle up a couple of horses at the Bendigo meeting, kicking off with Crimson Lady in the 1600m Showcase event.

"She has been a bit disappointing of late," Moroney admitted but he hopes that her latest unplaced run over 2100m was just a matter of her failing to stay.

"Hopefully dropping back to the mile will help her," he said.

Bishops Castle, contesting the second heat of the Silver Bowl Series, is our second Bendigo runner and we are confident of a bold showing.

"We have always had a bit of an opinion of him," said Moroney, "and we give him a really good chance as he has finally drawn a gate."

Jumping from wide gates at each of his last five starts, the O'Reilly gelding has not had a great deal of luck in running but hopefully from barrier two with Brad Rawiller aboard he can be right in the firing line.

Another three Ballymore horses head to Sale on Wednesday including Spitfire Lady and Mrs Hadlee (pictured) who both contest the second heat of the Rivette Series.

"There is not much between them," Moroney said, noting that both fillies have run good races in stronger city grade at recent outings.

"Spitfire Lady has drawn out a bit but she is down in class and she is never far away - she should prove hard to beat."

"Mrs Hadlee's two runs this time in have been terrific and with Audrey Guillemin's 3kg claim she should run really well."

"She has good gate speed," he added, "so she can go forward and her record at the 1400m is very good."

Third up from a spell, Point Made is also expected to run well - taking his place in the Eastcoast Plumbtec Bairnsdale Handicap over 1714m.

"He has had enough racing now to be nearing his best," he said, "and he has been going well."
[28 May 13]

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