Gunbower-based trainer Jim Lake is hoping that he can secure his first city winner in over seven years when he sends six-year-old De Mars to Flemington to compete in the Provincial Plate this Saturday.
De Mars is in the middle of a comeback preparation after being forced from racing for almost a year due to a career-threatening injury he sustained at the same track last May.
Lake has been impressed with De Mar’s performances since his return.
“A lot of people were saying I would never get him back but I haven’t been disappointed with any of his runs,” Lake said.
“He was only knocking up in his races early on because it took such a long time to get the fat out of him.
“He has come back nicely and I am happy with him.”
Lake credits De Mars success to his never stop trying attitude.
“His leg doesn’t seem to worrying him at this stage and the big fella is showing a bit of form again,” Lake said.
“He is no champion but he tries.”
The trainer has not had a city winner since January 2004 and knows more than most how hard it is to win at Flemington.
“I am not going to Flemington thinking I can’t win, but it is hard to win down there,” Lake said.
“He (De Mars) is pretty close (to his peak) now and it would be a nice thrill if he could win.
“He’s working very well, if he gets his share of luck he won’t be far away.”