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By Graham Potter | Wednesday, January 2, 2019

MCEVOY CAUGHT ON THE WRONG FOOT:Tony McEvoy wasn’t happy when a couple of his two-year-olds were put under pressure trying to make the Magic Millions 2YO Classic line-up. McEvoy has even gone so far as to call out Magic Millions (MM) owner Gerry Harvey on the matter. He is reported on Racenet as saying, “It’s Gerry Harvey’s sale – it’s Gerry Harvey’s race – why is he not being more vocal on this issue? Why wouldn’t they split the race on the Gold Coast? (McEvoy was referring to a race this Saturday – a week before the big one). “Everyone has got to have a decent chance to get into the Magic Millions. You have got 30 nominations and only 10 can run. It’s just silly. We need Gerry Harvey’s help on this.”

You have to wonder who the ‘we’ is in that sentence? Certainly, it is not the connections of those runners who have already done the hard yards and claimed their much sought after, hard-earned spot in the MM 2YO Order Of Entry who would have a different point of view, but McEvoy is certainly not alone in his frustration of trying to manage qualification of a horse who is a later developer. While clear points of worthy debate regarding the qualification criteria have been raised and will now be subject to formal discussion, the bottom line is that, whatever the rights and wrongs of the current system, the rules are the same for everybody from the moment any yearling is purchased at the Magic Millions sales through to race-day. If you don’t make the cut you can’t point the finger at somebody else.

IT NEVER RAINS BUT IT POURS:And there was more disappointment for McEvoy. Sun City, who won the B J Maclachlan so impressively last week at Doomben to announce himself as a top chance in the MM 2YO Classic, subsequently suffered a leg infection in the off-fore joint. Initially it was hoped that the fine-looking chestnut would still be able to take his place in the big race line-up but that optimism was short-lived with McEvoy shortly afterwards informing stewards that Sun City would not run in the Classic as he would need on-going treatment.

STILL A CHANCE: Tony McEvoy, who is looking for back to back wins in the big race having won the 2YO Classic with Sunlight in 2018, is still in with a chance of completing the double. He has the Not A Single Doubt filly Hills engaged in the QTIS Two-Year-Old Handicap at The Gold Coast on Saturday. Hills won on debut at Ipswich a week ago. She needs to win at the Gold Coast this weekend to qualify for the Magic Millions 2YO Classic and would then have to back up for the third week in a row on the big day which translates into a very testing schedule. But if you can get that ticket, you have got a chance!

ANOTHER WIN FOR AN ENDURING WORKING RELATIONSHIP: Trainer Michael Nolan and owner Kim McCasker are no strangers to shared success and when Devils Marbles won the first race at Doomben it put another notch on the belt of a team who won the Doomben 10 000 back in 1999 with Laurie’s Lottery.

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Tony McEvoy
Tony McEvoy
Hills … pictured after her debut win at Ipswich on December 28. She has to win at the Gold Coast on Saturday to secure a place in the $2 million MM 2YO Classic

Photos: Graham Potter
Hills … pictured after her debut win at Ipswich on December 28. She has to win at the Gold Coast on Saturday to secure a place in the $2 million MM 2YO Classic

Photos: Graham Potter
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