Widely travelled jockey Damian Lane has been booked to ride import Dibayani when he makes his Australian debut in the Group 2 $200,000 Back To Caulfield P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
Dibayani is one of two horses Lindsay Park co-trainer David Hayes and Tom Dabernig have entered in Saturday’s weight for age contest with Dwayne Dunn likely to take the mount on the promising Petrology.
“He’s been riding work once a week for us so we’ll be giving him more opportunities,” Hayes told AAP.
Lane has started to find his place again in Melbourne after taking up a three month riding in Hong Kong that saw him return to Australia for the start of the new racing season.
The young rider had established himself among the top jockeys riding in the competitive Melbourne scene but lost a bit of momentum with his overseas stint which saw him ride only five winners while in Hong Kong.
He has gradually started to rebuild his winning ways and was in the winner’s stall at Flemington last Saturday on the Russell Cameron trained Niminypiminy in the $80,000 Melville Yates & Craig Dann BenchMark 84 Handicap (1400m).
Dibayani began his career in Ireland where he was winner twice, including a victory at Listed level in the £30,000 King George V Cup (1 mile, 3 furlongs) at Leopardstown in Ireland in 2013 before heading to Hong Kong where he was placed three times from six starts.
Hayes had originally planned to run the Irish import in the Group 3 $150,000 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m) at Flemington last Saturday but thought the six year old would better suited over the 1400m of the P.B. Lawrence Stakes.
“I just thought 1400 metres would be better for him first-up,” Hayes said.
“The straight can sort those horses out as it can be a hard run first-up.
“He’s trialled well and I like him.”
Co-trainer Tom Dabernig also has a high opinion of Dibayani who she said had thirived in the rural enviromeet at Lindsay Park.
“He looks a lovely horse and we have been really quite taken by him since we have had him at the farm,” Dabernig told Racing.com.
“I think that he has really appreciated being back and getting out in a paddock and the Australian way of training seems to be really suiting him.
“He had a little issue with some bleeding in Hong Kong, which is quite common in Hong Kong and it doesn’t always translate to here in Australia.
“He has been cleared now by the stewards to race here and hopefully we can get him right and he can have a good spring.”
The Melbourne Racing Club has extended nominations for the P.B. Lawrence Stake until 10am on Tuesday, August 11, 2015, after only receiving ten entries for the Group 2 weight for age contest.