Warning winning at Flemington (Image: Racing Photos)
A combination of a set of blinkers and an Irish rider with an aggressive riding style has unearthed a AAMI Victoria Derby contender for the Anthony Freedman stable.
Irishman Martin Harley registered his biggest win in this country when he managed to extract the maiden galloper Warning from a pocket halfway down the straight to then run away and score a soft two-length win in the Listed Super Impose Stakes (1800m).
Starting at $15 after $19 was bet shortly before the race, Warning beat Independent Road ($9), with a long neck to Huntly Castle ($10) in third place.
WATCH: Warning's win
Freedman conceded he did not know a lot about Harley but his son Sam had met him when working in Great Britain and recommended him as a Group 1-winning rider that might be able to get the most out of Warning, who was coming off a dismal maiden defeat as an odds-on favourite.
"We were going to run on Friday night (at The Valley) but we'd drawn badly and I hadn't done much about a jockey," Freedman said.
"He needed a very vigorous, aggressive European-style rider and Sam said he was very aggressive and that he would suit the horse."
Harley said Hugh Bowman had recommended he try Melbourne as a riding base after his contract expired in Hong Kong.
"I had a six-month stint in Hong Kong, which was fantastic experience and after that I was advised by Mr Bowman to maybe give Melbourne a shot for the rest of the season," Harley said.
"I've done some riding for Mr Hayes (Lindsay Park stable) and I'd like to say a massive thanks to Mr Freedman for putting me on."
As for Warning, Freedman said he would probably have one more lead-up run at Caulfield before the $2 million AAMI Victoria Derby on November 2.
"We've always had a reasonable opinion on him but he was disappointing the other day at Sale when he started odds-on at Sale, but he didn't have the blinkers on," Freedman said.
WATCH: Hear from Freedman