The good track at Grafton is a long way from the bog surfaces he’s been running on in Victoria and that’s just one of the positives in favour of Summarise in today’s Grafton Cup.
The former sprinter turned staying prospect has been enjoying a pretty good time of it of late and he seems to be going from strength to strength under the guidance of trainer Stephen Theodore.
He was in fact originally a Darley horse and the extracted two wins out of him over the shorter trip before flogging him off at a tried horses sale at the end of last year.
“I get a lot of tried horses and the first week I get them I start swimming them and try to learn as much as I can with their breathing,” Theodore said.
“He had a great lung capacity, by the end of the first week he was swimming for 15 minutes and he wouldn’t have blown out a candle.
“I don’t ride my horses work so that’s how I determine whether they’re sprinters or stayers.”
While he may have convinced himself that the horse could stay telling that to the connections was an entirely different story, especially given he’s by Lonhro and out of a Flying Spur mare.
“Everyone thought I had rocks in my head when I said he’d stay,” Theodore said.
“I think Darley did a great job winning two shorter races with him.”
So far he’s proved himself to be correct though with 11 starts returning four victories and a couple of handy placings.
By far his most impressive though came last start where he overcame a heavy track to lug 59kg to victory across 2400m at Sandown.
It sets him up brilliantly for today’s test where he drops to just 53kgs and returns to a good surface, the likes of which have produced half his race victories.
Theodore certainly wouldn’t be making the 19 hour trip unless he fancied himself as a real winning chance, he sees the 2350m Listed test for $150,000 as well within his grasp.
It’s the first time he’s ever been to the Grafton track and he’s happy to get away from the mass of staying talent at home in Victoria.
“He’s my first runner at Grafton. I’ve been to Sydney a few times and Queensland a few times and I guess this is smack, bang in the middle,” he said.
Luck is on his side already with barrier one exactly what he was looking for.
He has also secured the ride of Jason Taylor, one of the more experienced hoops going around at the carnival and fresh off his Group 1 Stradbroke triumph.
“I had to find a lightweight jockey and given his success in the Stradbroke, well there’s nothing better than a jockey with their tail up,” Theodore said.
Summarise has been well supported in the 2011 Grafton Cup but will face strong challenges from other fancies including The Verminator and Shuffle The Cash.