Kersley Maintains Debellatio Faith


Top trainer Fred Kersley is banking on his strong belief in Debellatio to be validated when the Smart Missile gelding launches his autumn campaign at Ascot

Debellatio displayed potential as a two-year-old when he won the Group 3 Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) and ran a fast-closing third in the Group 2 Karrakatta Plate (1200m).

But his efforts as a three-year-old in the summer failed to deliver on high expectations when he ran outside the placings in the Group 2 WA Guineas (1600m) and Listed Fairetha Stakes (1400m).

However, despite a winless Ascot carnival campaign Kersley has not lost faith in Debellatio and is optimistic he can brush aside disappointing form on Saturday.

Debellatio races first-up after two trials including a solid fourth to WA Derby hero, Gatting, when he attacked the line strongly over 950m at Lark Hill.

Debellatio carries 59kg with the claim of Tayla Stone and in a field of seven starters in the Tabtouch Maiden (1200m), he will start from barrier five.

“He is an interesting horse for me and I don’t think he has reached his true potential as a race horse,” Kersley said on Tabradio.

“He was a very impressive youngster with a good action and it looked like he was going to be a real good horse.

“His form has been a little bit mixed and the two-year-old form from last season probably hasn’t stood up.

“So there are some questions mark about him, but in my view he is potentially a better than above average race horse.

“He will probably have two or three runs but I will be guided on his current form, it will be up to him.”

Debellatio ($4.20) sits behind Masquerade ($3.30) and Finally French ($3.90) in TAB markets.

Rockon Tommy is next at $4.40 and Salubrious, on debut for new trainer, Adam Durrant, is $5.50.

Kersley’s other runner Texas Moon ($61) is the rank outsider.

“He is a big ungainly horse and I think there is a bit to like,” Kersley said.

“This is a big step up in class, but I think he is a horse with a future.

“A bit more time he will be a better horse.”

Julio Santarelli