I have always held a high opinion of this son of Manhattan Rain. Despite being a little frustrated at seeing him in awkward positions at the rear of the field in recent starts, I was confident his luck would turn especially over the longer distance of 2500m in Saturday’s race.
Dwayne Dunn took advantage of an inside barrier to position midfield in the first half of the race, off the fence, and timed his move perfectly to find his way to the centre of the track in the straight.
I must say I remained confident when Oncidium Ruler moved up on his outside. Dwayne did not panic and Manapine kicked strongly to win by a half-neck. Manapine’s win showed me he has the class, strength and stamina to become a force in some good races in the future.
Thanks to connections headed by the Arrowfield Group’s John Messara, for the chance to train this promising gelding. We now have a decision to make – tackle the Listed VRC St Leger (2800m) on Anzac Day and/or the Group 1 SA Derby on May 9. We are currently leaning towards keeping Manapine fresh and focussed for the Derby, and not running the risk of expending all his reserves in the St Leger on the way through.
Whichever path we take over coming weeks, I believe Manapine will improve further in his four-year-old season.
Click here to watch the replay on racing.com
(picture courtesy of Bruno Cannatelli, Ultimate Racing Photos)