By Ray Hickson
You’ve heard of a horse taking a few runs to hit form but Kerry Parker’s stayer Red Dream is taking that theory to the extreme.
The six-year-old kicked off this preparation in January but didn’t post a win until his tenth run in at Nowra on April 29, then he did it again at starts 11 and 12 at Warwick Farm and Gosford.
“At his last prep he won his tenth start in and I turned him out,’’ Parker said.
“He might just take a while to switch on, I don’t know, he’s a very casual fellow. He does thrive in work but he doesn’t bust his gut on the track either.
“He’s just hit a rich vein of form and I’m quite happy about that.’’
With a win over 2700m and a placing at 2900m, Parker said Saturday’s Stayer’s Cup over the 3200m will be right up Red Dream’s alley.
Red Dream makes it three straight wins scoring over 2600m at Gosford on May 26
Although eligible for easier races he feels the trying conditions and the 8kg Red Dream receives from top weight Destiny’s Kiss will afford him every chance.
“You know he’ll run a trip. (The wet ground) takes the sprint out of the others, he just whacks away and does his thing so that doesn’t faze him,’’ Parker said.
“These races don’t come along very often. He’s performed well over distance and on a heavy track I’d imagine that 8kg will come into play.
“Winning form is good form, you roll the dice and throw him in there. He’ll run all day.’’
Red Dream was rated an $11 chance with TAB on Wednesday with Destiny’s Kiss holding favouritism at $3.
With the Stayer’s Cup run at 3.10pm it could be a huge half an hour for Parker and the horse’s owners Mary Jane Basson and Jessica Wilson who also share in the ownership of Queensland Derby hope Dark Dream which runs 25 minutes later.
Parker said Dark Dream should be forgiven for his defeat in the Grand Prix and warned he shouldn’t be forgotten in the final Group 1 three-year-old classic of the season.
“Losing a plate and pulling up sore I think are genuine excuses in anyone’s game,’’ he said.
“All in all he’s bounced back well in the last fortnight and I’m looking forward to him going around.’’
Parker has another staying three-year-old engaged at Randwick in lightly raced gelding Porky Pies who broke through at his sixth start with a dominant Kembla Grange win on May 17.
He’ll make his city debut in the Tab.com.au Handicap (2000m) and Parker said he’ll run well though he hasn’t locked in a race plan after leading throughout last start.
“It’s a step up in grade but sometimes you have to when you’ve got a three-year-old. He’s proven he can run out a strong 2000m,’’ he said.
“He doesn’t have to lead but I imagine he’ll be handy anyway. That happened because he drew the widest and we gave him a dig in the ribs and be positive.
“He did get over racing a bit going down the back straight and that’s how he ended up getting that roll along in front.’’