It’s very much seen as a launching pad for Man Of Peace’s second The Kosciuszko campaign but trainer Matthew Dale still needs to see a competitive performance in the Hyland Race Colours July Sprint (1100m) at Rosehill on Saturday.
Dale expects the eight-year-old, third in the $1.3m country feature last year, to be outsped first-up off an eight month break, with 59kg, on a firming track at the sprint trip but wants to ensure he’s on track to really press his case for The Kosciuszko in his second-up run next month.
“It is too short for him and he’s off a decent break, I’m very much looking at it as a kick off point but I want to see him show that little bit of intent to be back at the races and get benefit out of the hitout,’’ Dale said.
“He was a marvel through the winter last year and I was able to place him well through those periods, using Louise Day’s claim but that claim has dried up now Louise is a senior rider.
“Louise will ride him but there’s a couple of kilos there we would have been accessing previously.”
Dale said he elected to give the gelding a longer spell after he wasn’t pleased with the horse when he arrived back into the stable earlier this year. He’s had two jump outs and won an official trial at Moruya ahead of his return.
Man Of Peace, $13 with TAB on Wednesday, won five metropolitan races in 2020 through to the Spring Preview (1400m) at Randwick in mid-August – his seventh run of the preparation – before he finished a game third behind It’s Me in The Kosciuszko.
The Spring Preview, on August 14, is the race that will tell Dale if the gelding is a live chance of being selected again. Man Of Peace is a $26 chance in TAB’s Kosciuszko all-in market.
“Last year we were very deep into a prep then freshened him for it. This time (The Kosciuszko) is definitely on the radar but how we get there isn’t concrete at this stage,’’ he said.
“We’ll assess off the back of the Spring Preview how we play our next move.”
Dale will have at least one runner in this week’s TAB Highway (1500m) confirming second emergency Nuremburg Castle will make the trip to Rosehill and he’ll make a decision on stablemate Jac The Great, the first emergency, closer to race day should there be another scratching.
Nuremburg Castle, $9 with TAB, was placed in a Highway over 1300m back in December and Dale has been pleased with how the four-year-old’s returned with a first-up win and a close up fifth at Moruya earlier this month.
“I thought his first-up run was really good and his second-up run he had no luck,’’ he said.
“I thought third-up it’s the right time to have a crack at a Highway with him. He looks a more mature, stronger, product this time through so I thought he could be a top four chance.
“This preparation he’s racing a bit differently, settling more and looking like working through the line.”
Jac The Great failed to beat a horse home at Goulburn last Saturday but Dale is considering backing the mare up after she came through the race in A1 order despite being beaten 16 lengths.
“She ran poorly at Goulburn and she pulled up like she didn’t go around. She recovered like she didn’t go around indicating she didn’t try on the extremely wet surface,’’ he said.
“We’re putting it down to that because she’s been genuine prior to that.”
– Racing NSW