Imported stayer Dandino has moved one step closer to a racing return after he contested a jump out at Ballarat this morning.
Dandino jumped out alongside classy stablemates Trust In A Gust, Stratum Star and May’s Dream in his first public appearance since he suffered a tendon injury ahead of the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) last year and he worked to the line strongly to finish the jump out in second position.
Australian Thoroughbred Bloodstock Racing Manager Shona Drechsler told Sky Racing HQ that she was very pleased with Dandino’s effort in the jump out and she said that the rising eight-year-old looks in outstanding physical condition.
“He did a really good job,” Drechsler said.
“He was ridden by Johnny Allan and there were a couple of his stablemates in the jump out.
“He finished second by about half a head and he looked absolutely magnificent.
“It is pretty exciting.
“He has been in work for quite some time now, probably about three months on a very strict rehab program.
“He had two weeks off there and a little bit of a let-up, but he is back into work and he has been down at the Warrnambool beach getting the miles into his legs.
“We are happy with his fitness and he hasn’t missed a beat.
“He looks a completely different horse from last spring carnival and he has been trained differently on the beach.
“He looks really good and providing he gets through this jump out this morning we will look at giving him another one in ten to 12 days.”
Australian Thoroughbred Bloodstock owner Darren Dance revealed last year that the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) was the long-term goal for Dandino and Drechsler said that the $3 million race remains on the agenda for the Dansili gelding.
Drechsler said that she is unsure what path Dandino will follow heading into the Caulfield Cup, but she is hopeful that the 2013 Caulfield Cup runner-up can finally claim a maiden win at the highest level of racing.
“That would be just a dream,” Drechsler said of getting Dandino to the Caulfield Cup.
“I was talking to Darren Dance on the way here and we were talking about where he might kick-off.
“With his rating he is going to be jumping in the deep end, but he is a good horse and he tries.
“Providing Weiry can keep him together it will be an exciting spring for him and he can get that Group 1 that he deserves.”
Dandino is currently available at 2015 Caulfield Cup odds of $41 with Ladbrokes while Godolphin-owned Hartnell ($13) and Australian Derby winner Mongolian Khan ($13) are both locked in a battle for favouritism.