Melbourne based jockey Dwayne Dunn is hoping for some early Spring Carnival success on Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes betting favourite He’s Our Rokkii on Saturday after missing out on the ride on Chautauqua in the $10m The Everest (1200m) at Randwick on October 14.
Dunn was in the mix to ride the Team Hawkes trained Chautauqua in The Everest after his regular Sydney rider Tommy Berry, who is now riding in Hong Kong, failed to secure a release from the Hong Kong Jockey Club to rode in Sydney on October 14.
Dunn had been the first call for the ‘grey flash’ for his Melbourne assignments which resulted in several wins including a victory in the Group 1 $750,000 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) at Flemington during the 2016 Melbourne Autumn Carnival.
But connections of Chautauqua have given the plum The Everest ride to Sydney based jockey Brenton Avdulla who has partnered the seven year old in two recent barrier trials at Warwick Farm and Rosehill.
While Dunn would have liked to have been aboard Chautauqua, the $4.80 favourite for The Everest, he is looking forward to trying to qualify the David and Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig trained He’s Our Rokkii for the Group 1 $3m Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) at The Valley on October 28 with a win in the Group 2 $250,000 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) at The Valley on Saturday.
Dunn is also the regular rider for the undefeated Royal Symphony who is the $5.50 favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au for the Group 1 $2m Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas (1600m) which will be run at Caulfield on the same day as The Everest.
“It was always going to be sticky, going backwards and forwards to Sydney,” Dunn told racing.com.
“Chautauqua’s first couple of runs are probably going to be in lesser events until he gets to the grand final – which wasn’t going to be great for my spring, stop-starting.
“I can focus now on the Caulfield Guineas, and who knows, things may change.”
The Lindsay Park trained He’s Our Rokkii resumed from a spell with Dunn on board for a fourth behind Hartnell, Charmed Harmony and Black Heart Bart in the Group 2 $200,000 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 19 and Dunn was happy with his first up performance.
“He ran terrific first-up 1400m, and now I’m looking forward to Saturday’s event,” Dunn said.
“He ran terrific last start, he got really close to Black Heart Bart.”
“He couldn’t have got within 3-4 lengths of him last year, so he’s taken nice steps forward.
“It’s an important race, a qualifying event for a Cox Plate.
“He looks a lot better this time. He was a bit flat last preparation.
“His condition looks fantastic.
“Hopefully David (Hayes) will get him out to a trip he really likes, it’d be nice to get him towards 2400m at some stage in this preparation.
Early betting at Ladbrokes.com.au has He’s Our Rokkii (barrier 1) as the $3.50 favourite for the Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes with the winner being exempt from the ballot for the Ladbrokes Cox Plate.
The second pick in the market order is the Darren Weir trained Star Exhibit at $5.50 ahead of the two Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman trained Kiwi mares Lizzie L’Amour at $7 and Bonneval at $7.50.