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Preferment breaks maiden tag to win Victoria Derby

Preferment’s maiden tag mattered little as he added his name to the history books with victory in the Victoria Derby at Flemington.

The Chris Waller trained three-year-old became the first maiden since Redding in 1992 to record his first career win in the famous race.

Ridden by Damien Oliver, Preferment proved the toughest stayer in the race by downing Bondeiger with a strong finishing burst.

“The writing was on the wall last start,” Waller said.

“He has been a project but to nurture him from a yearling to where he is now is so satisfying.

“I did go back and forth between the blinkers and the winkers and it seems we made the right decision.

“He is by a great stallion, Zabeel, and is a stayer of the future.

“Gelding him had come up but he certainly won’t be now.”

The win was Oliver’s fifth Derby success and he wouldn’t be surprised if Preferment can return next year and compete in the Melbourne Cup.

“He could be back here next year on the Tuesday next year (for the Melbourne Cup),” Oliver said.

“He’s that type of horse, he’s a real stayer and I think he’s just going to get better.”

Preferment was purchased by Mulcaster Bloodstock for $190,000 at the Karaka Premier Yearling Sale in 2013.