By Brad Gray At Warwick Farm
If he wasn’t so talented there is little doubt that he’d already have been retired. However, Gold Seventy Seven, who hasn’t been sighted at the races since January 2015, took another step towards an improbable return to the race track at the Warwick Farm trials on Friday morning.
The now six-year-old was undefeated in three outings, including beating Music Magnate on debut, for Kris Lees before a bowed tendon saw him relegated to the sidelines for an extended period of time. He now finds himself under the care of Joe Pride, with this his fifth trial for his new trainer. So how close is he to making a return?
“There was been a gap in between the most recent trial and this one where he spent time in the paddock so he’ll have another trial,” Pride said.
“It’s very difficult getting horses back from those kind of breaks. What we didn’t feel last time after the trials was that he was ready to go to the races so he had a let up. Today wasn’t about finding out too much but the trial on the 8th (of September, again at Warwick Farm) will be crucial. There’ll be no more after that.”
Pride has a reputation as being able to rejuvenate the careers of horses whether it be due to injury or a dip in form, and said he does get an extra degree of satisfaction from such challenges.
“I’d rather horses not coming off such long breaks because they lose so much condition and match fitness. It’s hard to get that back into them. He is coming back from a bowed tendon which is notoriously difficult to bring horses back from so it’s a slow process but I’m pleased with him,” Pride said.
Meanwhile, the stable’s evergreen star sprinter Terravista had his first public outing ahead of the spring with Pride still hopeful of securing a spot in The Everest for the eight-year-old. He’d tackle the $10m sprint feature first up with Terravista if given the opportunity.
“He’s a long way off so was just out to have a look around today,” Pride said.