TONY McEvoy is unperturbed by a perceived lack of appreciation in some quarters for stable flag-bearer Hey Doc, describing the veteran sprinter as perennially overlooked.
Winner of four Group 1s, Hey Doc faces imposing opposition in the $1.5 million Darley Sprint Classic (1200m), but McEvoy is undaunted.
“He’s always overlooked a little bit, this horse,” McEvoy said of the last-start Manikato Stakes winner.
‘The only two times he’s failed down the straight, he’s had significant problems which took time to recover.
“He’s a very good straight horse and he has to be respected.
“He’s as sound as he’s ever been. He’s in tip-top order.
“His win at The Valley was a tonic for everybody.
“On that win, there’s more to come.”
Asked to rank Hey Doc against the other leading horses he has handled, McEvoy said: “Sunlight was an amazing filly and mare for us but Hey Doc was our first Group 1 winner.
“He’s been there the whole time for us. He would be our number one.”
McEvoy rates Bivouac as the toughest to beat, admitting he is unsure what the enigmatic Nature Strip will produce.
“There are probably two of them,” he said referring to Nature Strip.
“The Nature Strip from last spring would probably win. The Nature Strip from the last two runs has probably lacked the killer punch.
“I’d probably prefer he wasn’t in the race.
“Bivouac was huge in The Everest and the filly Libertini will take a lot of beating.”
Simon Zahra expects straight-course specialist Zoutori to continue his outstanding form.
“He’s come back better than ever, his form has been faultless,” Zahra said.
“His two runs at 1200m up the straight have been good.
“He’s raring to go and condition wise it’s probably the best he’s looked.”
Originally published asDoc to continue great form, McEvoy
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