Impressive two-year-old colt Stagger will return to the track at Dubbo Racecourse this Saturday after a 149 day spell.
The Snippetson colt won his debut run at Canberra in February by an incredible 12 and a half lengths, however was unable to continue his winning streak.
The $9000 yearling finished fifth in his last start at Randwick after being backed into race favourite for the Listed Canonbury Stakes.
Trainer and owner Brian Buckley feels that the long spell has set Stagger back on the right track.
“He’s matured and filled out all over, in the right places,” Buckley said.
“He’s come back 35 to 40 kilos heavier and started to furnish where he should.
“He’s a darn nice horse.”
Buckley has been pleased with Stagger’s performances in his last two jump-outs.
“He hasn’t trialled but had two jump outs, the last about a fortnight back and has come through really well,” Buckley said.
“He’s not 100 per cent wound up, probably 90 per cent, but he’s going pretty good.”
Buckley says Stagger possesses the same lightning fast speed he had before his spell.
“He doesn’t seem to have lost any,” Buckley said.
“I’m happy with where he’s at.”
While Buckley was disappointed with Stagger’s defeat last preparation at Randwick, he believes the horse had purely had enough.
“He didn’t travel well, wanted to play up down there and got off the lead once when walking,” he said.
“In hindsight he’d probably had enough, (gone) over the top.
“That’s why we turned him straight out.”
Stagger has been assigned the top weight of 59 kilograms for this Saturday’s race.
“The weight won’t worry him over the short trip,” Buckley said.
“I don’t know much about the opposition, there are a few from Sydney which you’ve always got to be wary off.
“I’m happy with my bloke.”