By Ray Hickson
Trainer Les Bridge admits he misses seeing TAB Everest winner Classique Legend around the stable but he's been rapt with the rise of promising four-year-old All Time Legend.
And as the gelding attempts to make it five wins on end in the Drinkwise Mile (1600m) at Randwick on Saturday, Bridge said he’s a very versatile and likeable horse and while he's no replacement for the star grey he's making the right moves at the moment.
When asked what it is he likes about All Time Legend, Bridge responded in the style that was a breath of fresh air during Classique Legend’s Everest campaign – “He keeps winning”.
After showing how adaptable he is with a dominant first-up win coming from near last followed by an all the way victory at Randwick two weeks ago Bridge says he is happy to leave it to champion jockey Kerrin McEvoy to plot the right course.
“Personally I think he loves a fast run race where he can come home,’’ Bridge said.
“But I just put the best jockey on and let him work it out.
All Time Legend wins at Randwick on January 9
“You’ve got to wait until you go a furlong and see what happens. If it is going to be a slowly run race he can go forward, if they go quick he can sit back.”
All Time Legend, $2.40 favourite with TAB on Thursday, stays at Benchmark 88 level but he faces a different task on Saturday with the rise to 1600m and to 59kg.
But that’s no cause for nerves or concern for Bridge who is happy to be bullish about a horse still well and truly on the way up.
“No, I think he’ll win. I’ve got no reason to think he can’t win,’’ he said.
Stablemate Helga is a different story as there’s every chance at this stage of her five-year-old year she’s reached her class ceiling.
The mare has shown glimpses of form in her three runs this preparation but it’s now been just over a year, albeit only six runs ago, since her last success.
With the claim for Bridge’s apprentice Chris Williams, Helga will carry 57kg in the TAB Handicap (1600m) and now she’s creeping down slightly in the weights it might give her a fighting chance.
“You know what those mares are like, you get a different result every week,’’ Bridge said.
“She’ll come across and probably sit outside the leader and she’ll run all right.
“But she’s still up in the weights and you just can’t tip horses like her.”