Explosive Jack (NZ) Completes Historic Derby Treble

10 May 2021

Explosive Jack (NZ) claims his third Derby title in a historic victory. Photo: Jenny Barnes

Three-year-olds bred and sold in New Zealand have been an unstoppable force in Australia this season, winning the Victoria Derby (2500m), Tasmanian Derby (2200m), West Australian Derby (2400m), Australian Derby (2400m), Randwick Guineas (1600m), Rosehill Guineas (2000m) and South Australian Derby (2400m). Explosive Jack (NZ) (Jakkalberry) has delivered three of those on his own, completing a historic three-state Derby treble with a dominant performance in Adelaide on Saturday.

Bought for $100,000 from Novara Park’s draft at Karaka 2019, Explosive Jack has now had eight starts for five wins, two placings and A$1.73 million in stakes – more than 17 times his purchase price. On Saturday he became the first horse in 49 years to win a Derby in three different Australian states, adding the South Australian Derby at Morphettville to his previous victories in Tasmania and New South Wales.

Explosive Jack’s Australian Derby triumph at Randwick last month headed a New Zealand and Karaka trifecta, with Young Werther (NZ) (Tavistock) second and Lion’s Roar (NZ) (Contributer) third. It was a similar story in Adelaide on Saturday as Explosive Jack scored a superb victory and stablemate Let’s Karaka Deel (NZ) (Dundeel), who cost $80,000 at Karaka 2019, filled the runner-up position. Both are trained by Ciaron Maher and David Eustace.

Explosive Jack was a class above his rivals in Saturday’s A$500,000 classic, sitting midfield before creeping closer as the field made their way down the side of the track.

Jockey John Allen went for gold at the turn and Explosive Jack charged to the front and careered away, opening up a commanding margin in the straight. Let’s Karaka Deel produced a strong finish to emerge as the best of the chasers, but Explosive Jack romped home by two and a half lengths.

“To go to Tasmania, then go to Sydney and peak for the Derby there, then peak again here today is amazing,” Allen said. “He was just too good for them today.

“I was happy with my position, three wide but with cover. They were going very slowly in front, and I was just happy to let him start to flow into it. He was always comfortable and always travelling well.

“When I cruised up to them on the corner, I knew he was the one horse that had no worries at all about him running out the trip.

“When I let him down, he quickened well enough to put the race to bed. I said, ‘They’re not going to catch me now.’ He was much too good.”

Maher was delighted with the performances of both Explosive Jack and Let’s Karaka Deel.

“This is a super result,” he said. “I didn’t think there was a lot between those two horses, but I just thought Jack was that little bit stronger. The other horse, when he furnishes, is going to be a really nice horse as well.

“But these owners of Explosive Jack, they really celebrate their wins. They’ve had a lot of good horses over the years, and I think they’ve got another one here. It was a great ride by Johnny today, and it’s just been a super job by all of our team to get both of those horses here in fantastic order today.

“Explosive Jack is a tough horse. I think that term gets used quite loosely at times, but he really has a great temperament.”

Maher is even considering shooting for a fourth Derby with Explosive Jack in the Group One Queensland Derby (2400m) at Eagle Farm on May 29.

“He certainly didn’t look like he was slowing down today, so you never know,” he said. “He might end up in Queensland yet.”

Runner-up Let’s Karaka Deel has also far exceeded his $80,000 purchase price, earning A$246,970 in his eight-start career to date.

Explosive Jack is one of four Group One-winning three-year-olds in Australia this season that were purchased at Karaka. Victoria Derby winner Johnny Get Angry (NZ) (Tavistock) was bought for $50,000, Randwick Guineas winner and Australian Derby placegetter Lion’s Roar cost $65,000, and Rosehill Guineas hero Mo’unga (NZ) (Savabeel) had a $325,000 price tag.

Aegon (NZ) (Sacred Falls), who won the Group One New Zealand 2000 Guineas (1600m) and the $1m Karaka Million 3YO Classic (1600m) before crossing the Tasman and winning the Group Two Hobartville Stakes (1400m) in Sydney, has been another big success story – bought for $150,000 at Karaka.

Vendor Novara Park
Purchaser Moody Racing (Victoria)
Breeding Jakkalberry – Extra Explosive
Sale Lot 21, Karaka 2019 Book 1, $100,000
Bred by Explosive Breeding