Mirage Dancer put through his paces ahead of the Caulfield Cup.
Mirage Dancer put through his paces ahead of the Caulfield Cup.

Trainer ‘trying to keep lid’ on import excitement

IF Caulfield Cup chance Mirage Dancer's first gallop at Cranbourne is any indication trainer Trent Busuttin could have a hard time keeping a "lid on things" ahead of the $5m classic.

Mirage Dancer, a six-year-old son of English star stallion Frankel, was floated to the Busuttin-Natalie Young yard on Saturday morning after being cleared from quarantine at Werribee.

The import galloped about 30 minutes after stepping off the truck and did not turn a hair.

 

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"He's a six-year-old stallion that acts like an eight-year-old gelding," Busuttin said.

"He's got the best temperament … he galloped with a mare, sat beside her, walked beside her, trotted off beside her and didn't bat an eyelid, he's a lovely natured straight-forward horse."

Mirage Dancer has won four of 18 career starts and placed on eight other occasions.

He ran second in the Group 3 Glorious Stakes at Goodwood last start in August.

Mirage Dancer put through his paces ahead of the Caulfield Cup
Mirage Dancer put through his paces ahead of the Caulfield Cup

The promising northern hemisphere stayer last year split eventual Caulfield Cup winner Best Solution and the fourth placegetter Duretto in a 2400-metre Group 2 race at Newmarket.

"We're trying to keep a lid on things," Busuttin said.

"Seen things go wrong very quickly. Look they come out here and you don't know until the day whether they turn up or not, I think we've got the right credentialed horse and if he can turn up in the right order he will run a competitive race."

Mirage Dancer, a $15 chance with Ladbrokes to win the Caulfield Cup, is also nominated for the Melbourne Cup.

Trainer Trent Busuttin thinks he has the right-credentialed horse for the big Cups.
Trainer Trent Busuttin thinks he has the right-credentialed horse for the big Cups.

The former Sir Michael Stoute-trained galloper had form around English superstar Cracksman, Benbatl, The Taj Mahal and The Cliffsofmoher as a juvenile.

Busuttin, whose father Paddy prepared 1992 Melbourne Cup placegetter Castletown, one of New Zealand's most celebrated stayers, will saddle up his first Cup horse on Saturday.

"The dynamics of the race have changed with the Europeans," Busuttin said.

"We joined the bandwagon and went out and sourced what we hope is the right horse through (bloodstock agent) Mark Pilkington, he found the horse and put it together."

Group 1 jockey Ben Melham is booked to ride Mirage Dancer at his Australian debut in the Caulfield Cup.

"It's new territory for me, 10 weeks between runs," Busuttin said.

"We're happy with the way he's turned up, I would say fitness wouldn't be an issue."

News Corp Australia


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