Derby entrant Waipiro turned what looked a hot bet365 British EBF “Confined” Novice Stakes at Newmarket into a procession.
Trained by Ed Walker, the half-brother to Hong Kong Group One winner Waikuku had finished sixth of 13 on his only start last year at Kempton behind Simon and Ed Crisford’s Wigmore Street.
As a result he was sent off the outsider of the whole field against three previous winners and several other bluebloods.
Running into the dip it appeared as if Karl Burke’s promising Liberty Lane was going to make all the running under Clifford Lee – but Tom Marquand was still sitting pretty on Waipiro.
When Marquand asked his mount to stretch, the Australia colt did just that and powered away from the field to win by three and a half lengths at 25-1.
He now looks bound for a Derby trial, with Paddy Power cutting him to 33-1 from 200-1 for the Classic itself.
“We left him in the Derby because we think he’s a nice horse,” said Walker.
“He had a float around Kempton last year but he was very weak. He ran fine from a bad draw, doing all his best work at the end.
“He’s been working well in the spring, but the horses hadn’t been running as well as I’d like so it was a well-needed boost for the yard.
“He is a raw horse, he behaved very badly, he was very green and physically he’s still very raw, he’s only going to get better and better so it’s exciting.
“I think we’ll run in a trial, I don’t know which one yet, I’ll see what Tom says.”