Wayward colt to benefit from experience

The Lindsay Park operation of Ben & JD Hayes will be hoping Excel And Fly has learned a lot from his one and only experience down the Flemington straight. The newcomer is among the eight two-year-olds that are set to make their debut in the Darley Spring Preview (900m) on Wednesday. 

The Darley Spring Preview is the first two-year-old race of the new juvenile season and was introduced in 2019 as a preview to the Maribyrnong Trial Stakes (1000m) at Flemington in early October. The time honoured contests had traditionally been the first two-year-old races of the season held for ‘the babies’, one division staged for fillies and one for colts & geldings. 

Excel And Fly trialled over 800m up the Flemington straight on September 14 but was exceptionally wayward. He ducked-in sharply soon after the start, and near the 150m-mark jumped a cone that was in place to keep the two-year-olds away from the inside section of the course. 

Ben Hayes is expecting the exposure to the Flemington straight that day will see a far better performance from Excel And Fly on Wednesday.  

“He got it a little bit wrong down the straight the first time,” Hayes said. “He was jumping cones and not going straight, but he is a horse that apart from that, is doing everything right and doing it correctly. 

“I think that experience will stand him in good stead. He’s the sort of horse that needs to do something once and then he’ll learn from that experience. 

“So, I do think he’ll be much better going down the straight the second time. He’s a nice horse; a good body.” 

Excel And Fly is by Flying Artie from the Exceed And Excel mare Harpers and was purchased for Lindsay Park clients for $100,000.

The first 2-year-old race of the new season gets staged at Flemington on Wednesday, picture Racing Photos