Popular import Dandino has produced an impressive start-to-finish performance to take out the Group 3 Queen’s Cup (2600m) with complete ease at Flemington Racecourse this afternoon.
Dandino left as second favourite in the Queen’s Cup and did his chances of success absolutely not harm when jumping well and settling in ideal running position on the heels of Bonfire, Secret Number and Don Doremo pas the first the first time.
Immediately switching off and receiving a great run in transit over the back straight as a result, the Dansili gelding loomed at the top of the straight but jockey Ben Melham allowed ample time for the eight-year-old to balance before asking for an extra effort.
Strolling up to join the lead pack with 400m to run, Dandino kicked clear and maintaining a strong finishing; attacking the line for a comfortable two length win over Secret Number.
Melham delivered a typically smart performance aboard Dandino for success in the 2015 Queen’s Cup but was quick to lay all the praise on the class of his talented mount and the training efforts of Darren Weir in the triumph.
“He’s the right man to be riding for at this Carnival and this caps off a great week for him,” Melham said after the race.
“This horse has been good to me, he’s such a gentleman to ride and is probably unlucky not to have won one or two more races but thankfully the owners have stuck with me, I’m grateful for that and it’s great to repay them with a win here today.
“He just had a perfect run throughout, relaxed himself beautifully, came out at the right time and just ran over the top of them.
“He’s got a fair bit of class about him this horse and it’s good to see him with a well-deserved win.”
Weir saddled 2015 Melbourne Cup champion Prince Of Penzance to a shock win on Tuesday and was understandably elated to continue his incredible week via Dandino in the 2015 Queen’s Cup.
“It’s taken a bit of coming down from, but that’s got us back up there again,” Weir said.
“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.
“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.
“This is a nice back-up.”
In taking out the 2015 Queen’s Cup, Dandino has now posted an impressive career total of nine wins and twelve minors through a total of thirty-seven starts.