Scene Set For Vic Peters Thriller

TOMMY Shelby has set the tone for next week’s Vic Peters Classic Final with a stunning 29.44 heat victory at Wentworth Park on Saturday night.

Adam Dobbin

4 July 2020

WA star Tommy Shelby has set the tone for next week’s Group 1 Vic Peters Classic Final (520m) with a stunning 29.44 heat victory at Wentworth Park on Saturday night.

Last weekend the son of Fernando Bale peeled off sizzling sections to trial in 29.63 at his Wentworth Park debut, giving every indication he was poised to unleash something special on Saturday night.

But not even trainer Steve Withers would have been prepared for the remarkable performance turned in by his Perth Cup consolation winner, running through the first section in an electrifying 5.33 before posting 17.68 up the back en route to his 29.44 win.

Finishing second to the WA megastar was Zipping Zeek for trainer Jason Magri, the son of Zulu Zeus rattling home in a mesmerising last section to book his place in the time-honoured final.

Tommy Shelby’s powerhouse heat victory for Steve Withers, which extended his record to 13 wins from 17 appearances, will see him start a warm favourite for next Saturday’s decider.

But the final heat ensured it will be an interesting lead-up to the $75,000 to-the-winner finale after the Michael Eberand-trained Ebby Jet Power stopped the clock in a brilliant display in 29.51.

Withers is staying with Eberand for his Sydney campaign, the pair boasting the fastest two qualifiers for the rich aged classic next weekend.

Runner-up to Ebby Jet Power was Green Siren for Darryl Thomas while fast finishing Victorian Houdini Boy filled third.

The opening Vic Peters heat produced an upset result when the Martin Hallinan-trained Zipping Sheldon, a son of Mister Twister, runner-up to Ando’s Mac in the 2015 Vic Peters, stopped the clock in 30.01.

Finishing second was tearaway leader Simply Smudge to run out of his skin at just start five for Peter Rodgers, while filling third was red hot series favourite Catch The Thief.

But in a turn of good fortune for trainer Matt Clark, Catch The Thief’s third placing was enough to see the son of Aussie Infrared through to next week, as it was for his brother Playlist in heat two.

Clark will remain in NSW and set up base at Potts Park for the week, given the uncertainty around the escalating COVID-19 issues engulfing Victoria.

Following the box draw, TAB moved to install Tommy Shelby and Catch The Thief $3 equal favourites, the pair to resume acquaintances after matching motors twice in WA where Catch The Thief came out on top on both occasions.

Third favourite at $3.50 is Ebby Jet Power from box eight while Zipping Zeek is quoted a $6 chance in early markets.

2020 Group 1 Vic Peters Classic Box Draw:

1. Playlist
2. Tommy Shelby
3. Zipping Zeek
4. Zipping Sheldon
5. Catch The Thief
6. Simply Smudge
7. Green Siren
8. Ebby Jet Power