David Vandyke’s star galloper Alligator Blood steps out for the first time this spring, on path to the 2020 Golden Eagle, with a possible detour to The Everest if the opportunity arises.

The Australian Guineas winner returns in an Open Quality Handicap (1100m) at Doomben, with Vandyke telling RSN he opted to kick things off in his home state rather than testing the waters in Sydney.

Watch: Alligator Blood take out the Australian Guineas.

“I didn’t want to take him down to Sydney for his first up run, I thought we’ll keep him at home, he was always going to get 61kg and he was always going to give a fair bit of weight away to some good horses, so it won’t be an easy assignment over 1100m, but he’s ready.”

“He has done well, he’s thickened up a bit, he looks good, his work’s been good, I don’t really have a handle on how he’s going to go tomorrow because he’s a bit lazy in his work and trials but all the signs are good and looking forward to seeing what he does under race pressure”

The Odyssey appears to be Alligator Blood’s biggest threat, with a number of conditions favouring Kelly Schweida’s galloper, which Vandyke pointed out.

“Well he is [a pretty smart horse], I think we beat him 2 and ¼ lengths at level weights, it’s now got a 7kg turnaround, it’ll be better suited over the 1100m, it’s drawn barrier 1 at Doomben, it races on pace, so there’s a lot to like about The Odyssey’s chances”

“There’s a bit against us tomorrow, it’s not his grand final, and he’s a bit vulnerable”

Asked about Alligator Blood’s spring roadmap, Vandyke said it would depend on Saturday’s performance.

“It’ll be determined on how he performs tomorrow, if he wins tomorrow … there will probably be some suitors to put him in The Everest, but if he just runs an average race, then we’ll go to the Silver Eagle, and then the Golden Eagle which will be his grand final.”

Alligator Blood is the $6.50 favourite for the 2020 Golden Eagle, and a $21 chance in The Everest.

*Odds correct at time of posting this article

Horse Win Place
1 Alligator Blood (5)J: Ryan Maloney 61kg T: David Vandyke $1.85 $1.18
2 Bandipur (10)J: Jag Guthmann-Chester 57kg T: Ms K Purdy $16.00 $3.40
3 Just Orm (4)J: Robbie Fradd 55kg T: T J Gollan $6.50 $1.80
4 Fiery Heights (2)J: Dale Smith 54kg T: B J Lockwood $21.00 $4.60
5 Tycoon Ace (9)J: Michael Cahill 54kg T: Tony & Maddysen Sears $26.00 $4.60
6 Mr Marbellouz (7)J: Ben Thompson 54kg T: K R Kemp $15.00 $3.30
7 The Odyssey (1)J: Ms Stephanie Thornton 54kg T: K M Schweida $4.40 $1.30
8 In His Stride (8)J: Matthew Mcgillivray 54kg T: R G Lipp $61.00 $8.00
9 Invincible Al (6)J: Mark Du Plessis 54kg T: T J Gollan $31.00 $5.00
10 Catesby (3)J: Ron Stewart 54kg T: Desleigh Forster $34.00 $5.50

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