Rejuvenated stayer Dandino headlines the nominations for the Group 2 $300,000 Zipping Classic (2400m) at Sandown on Saturday.
The Melbourne Racing Club has extended nominations for the 2400m weight for age contest until 10am local time on Tuesday November 10 after the Darren Weir trained Dandino was one of only thirteen horses entered.
Dandino was back in the winner’s stall last Saturday for the first time since winning the US$225,000 American St. Leger Stakes (2714m) at Arlington in the USA on August 17, 2013, but he was out of action for almost twelve months because of injury.
Part owners Australian Thoroughbred Bloodstock sent the well travelled English stayer to Weir in the hope that he could bring him back from a severe suspensory ligament injury.
The Melbourne Cup winning trainer not only got Dandino back to the race track but the nine year stallion was able to win the Group 3 $300,000 Queen’s Cup (2600m) at Flemington at his sixth run for the Weir stable.
Weir had tried to qualify Dandino for the Melbourne Cup and was hoping to win the Group 3 $300,000 Geelong Cup (2400m) at Geelong and gain a penalty for the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington last Tuesday.
Dandino could only manage to run second to Almoonqith in the Geelong Cup and missed out on a Melbourne Cup berth but Weir was happy that he could win the Queen’s Cup.
“It’s great to get a win with him. Obviously he came to us with a pretty significant injury and there’s a lot of people I have to thank there,” Weir said.
“When he ran at Geelong the plan was to try and win there to sneak into the Cup and hopefully get a penalty. He had every chance there and wasn’t good enough.”
Weir has also nominated Dandino for the Listed $150,000 Sandown Cup (3200m) on Saturday.
The Premiership winning trainer could have two runners in the Zipping Classic with Tall Ship also among the nominations.
Geelong Cup winner Almoonqith and Mackinnon Stakes runner up Rising Romance have been entered in the Zipping Classic for the Lindsay Park training team of David Hayes and Tom Dabernig.
After winning the Geelong Cup, Almoonqith went around in the Melbourne Cup and finished eighteenth behind Prince Of Penzance while Rising Romance put in a first class effort to run second to French galloper Gailo Chop in the Group 1 $1m Longines Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) at Flemington last Saturday week on Derby Day.
Chirs Waller has nominated Who Shot Thebarman who is also coming off a Melbourne Cup run that saw him run finish in eleventh place, four lengths behind the winner.