First Trial For Undisputed Comeback King

By: Ryan Clark
February 1st, 2012
Breaking News

Peter Robl started the comeback story when he returned from a 12 month suspension, then it was Blake Shinn along the same lines with Glen Boss and Damien Oliver to follow after surgeries.

None of them though have a story quite like that of Marlon Dolendo.

Dolendo has been a jockey for over two decades with the majority of that time in Australia spent riding on the Central Coast.

He was based at Port Macquarie and for the average race fan he was probably a name they didn’t know.

That changed about 14 months ago when Dolendo was rushed to hospital after a meeting at Port Macquarie where he’d booted home a series of winners.

He said he felt weak and tired and could barely move, his kidneys were working on less than 10 percent capacity.

Without a transplant he faced certain death so in stepped his sister to give him the gift of life.

The August operation was a success for both parties and Dolendo returned to the saddle only three months later.

“It’s been going good since I’ve been back riding track work,” he said.

“Been back riding track work for the last couple of months.”

He says there was one set back a couple of weeks back but he’s taken steps to fix that issue.

“Three weeks ago I ended up back in hospital because of dehydration,” he said.

“Got a check up a couple of days ago and everything was very good, just got to make sure I drink a lot of water.”

He admits the first time he got back in the saddle things took a while to click together.

“My first couple of days were a struggle, my leg was shaking,” he said.

“A few days later after that I feel great.”

The next step for Dolendo comes this week when he picks up a solitary ride at the Grafton trials.

It’s important both for his own confidence and that of Racing NSW who have to approve Dolendo’s racing return.

It’s something he’s anxious to achieve but knows after what he’s been through it’s best to take things carefully.

“When I was having my transplant I just couldn’t wait to get back on a horse, just need to be patient,” he said.

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