More Than Great didn’t run well enough in Scone to warrant a trip to Brisbane but trainer Brett Dodson is still very confident there’s a few good runs in his horse yet.
He’ll stay closer to home this campaign but he’ll still be well and truly tested with Group races filling up his program.
“The Stradbroke (Handicap) is out of the equation now,” Dodson said.
“He had to run really well at Scone first-up to go to Brisbane but things didn’t work out.”
His first test back in the metro grade will be this Saturday at Rosehill and there’s plenty riding on the run where the horse simply has to be competitive to prove his worth to both trainer and owners alike.
You can understand why they have persevered though with so much talent shown in previous preparations.
As a three-year-old working for David Payne More Than Great lived up to his name beating now top five world ranked racehorse So You Think.
That was way back in September of 2009 and is also the last time he crossed the line first.
Since then things just haven’t gone right for him and Dodson was the man who took up the challenge of trying to resurrect his career.
“Unfortunately he did some damage to his hind leg while he was spelling,” he said.
“I knew one of the owners and it was decided to send him up to me to rehabilitate on the beach and in the salt water.”
He was away form racing for more than a year and Dodson threw him into the deep end from the outset, contesting the feature sprint during the hugely competitive Scone Cup carnival.
He finished a long way off the winner Motspur but he’ll be given plenty of time to try and build up his fitness.
“Despite the result, you can’t be too critical of the run because he was 13 months off the scene and he has come on,” Dodson said.
If racing proves to be just too difficult for him then it’s not a total disaster as his early promise will still prove valuable at stud.
“He’s by More Than Ready and he’s well bred on his dam’s side,” Dodson said.
“The owners are keen to give him a crack at stud and if I can win a couple of Group races with him that will make him a better proposition as a stallion.”
The task of rediscovering his form of old will be left to apprentice jockey Adam Hyeronimus.
The horse arrive din Sydney yesterday and had his first Rosehill run on the inner track this morning.
“By bringing him down early I was hoping to give him a good gallop on the grass but the rain put an end to that idea,” Dodson said.
“I was still able to put him up against one of Tim Martin’s who gets along a bit and he worked nicely.”