Brown chasing fourth SA Derby win

Yaphet can give Cliff Brown a fourth South Australian Derby victory is successful at Morphettville.

YAPHET. Picture: Racing Photos

Trainer Cliff Brown will saddle his first South Australian Derby runner in 22 years when Yaphet runs in the Group 1 race at Morphettville. 

Blue Murder, in 2000, gave Brown his third winner in the Blue Riband event in five years following victories with Cheviot in 1996 and Markham in 1997. 

It was an exceptional record and in modern times matched only by Darren Weir who won three on end with Howard Be Thy Name (2016), Volatile Mix (2017) and Leicester (2018). 

"That seems a lifetime ago," Brown said of Blue Murder's victory. 

But Brown was missing from Australian training ranks, heading to Singapore in late 2007, returning last year to set up at Mornington. 

Yaphet confirmed his place in Saturday's 2500m Group 1 contest with a fourth-place finish to Elzamee over 2000m at Caulfield last Saturday. 

"The barrier meant we had to ride him quiet and the tempo was against him, but I just wanted to see him hit the line, which he did," Brown said. 

Yaphet had been down to run at Cranbourne the previous week, but that meeting was called off just prior to his race because of heavy rain and an unsafe track. 

Brown said it was not a disruption to his program, although stepping up to the 2500m on Saturday is unchartered territory. 

"He's a remarkably tough horse but as for the trip, I don't know," Brown said. 

"Female pedigree wise, you would say no, but being by Blackfriars, that gives you some hope." 

Blackfriars himself was a Derby winner, taking out the 1999 Victoria Derby at Flemington. 

Yaphet is a $17 chance with TAB in latest betting, behind Alegron ($2.80), last start winner of the VRC St Leger (2800m) at Flemington ahead of Jungle Magnate ($6.50) and Harleymoven  ($7.50). 

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