Mourinho was one of a number of talented gallopers that galloped at Moonee Valley this morning and he impressed trainer Darryl Blackshaw with his final piece of work ahead of the 2015 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes.
Mourinho has been one of the most consistent weight-for-age gallopers in Australia over the past 12 months and he showed that he was ready for a big 2015 Spring Racing Carnival campaign when he returned to racing with a narrow victory over The Cleaner in the Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 15.
Jockey Vlad Duric said that he received a lovely feel from Mourinho during trackwork this morning and Blackshaw told Racing Ahead this morning that the Oratorio gelding had trained on strongly coming out of the 2015 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes.
“We are very, very pleased with him,” Blackshaw said.
“He had a gallop at Moonee Valley this morning and Vlad was very happy with the way that he finished off.
“It was what we wanted to do with him, so he did a really good job.
“The horse has done well and he is the same weight that he was before the first run.
“He has only improved.”
Mourinho finished a gallant second behind The Cleaner in the 2014 edition of the Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) and Blackshaw is hopeful that the eight-year-old will be able to go one better in this year’s race.
A ballot-exempt entry is on offer to the winner of the Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes and Mourinho can secure his place in the Australasian Weight-For-Age Championship after narrowly missing out on a start last year.
“I don’t know if we are going to be confident, but he does a terrific job the horse and he puts in every time,” Blackshaw said.
“It would be beautiful to draw the same barrier and to do the same thing again would be spot-on.”
The 2015 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes field will be released tomorrow and Mourinho is set to take on the likes of Herbert Power Stakes winner Big Memory, Godolphin-owned Complacent, Cox Plate favourite Contributer, Hong Kong import Dibayani, Chris Waller-trained Foreteller, last year’s Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes winner The Cleaner, Victoria Derby winner Preferment and Macedon Lodge-owned The United States in the Group 2 event this weekend.