By Ray Hickson
The impact of vastly improved galloper Super’s winning streak isn’t lost on trainer Mark Minervini as the five-year-old attempts another step up the ladder at Rosehill on Saturday.
The former South Australian trainer relocated to Newcastle in August last year and admits it has taken time to get a foothold as a new trainer to the area, add to that complications brought on by the pandemic, but the emergence of Super has been a real boost.
“Newcastle Jockey Club gave us 16 boxes and it took a while to fill them up but they are full now and we have 25 or 30 horses on our books,’’ he said.
“You’ve got no idea what he’s done, in the last six weeks he’s been brilliant for the business and has brought in new clients. He’s given us a bit of exposure.
“When you relocate and try to get established, well he’s exactly what we were hoping for.”
The gelding was one of the horses Minervini brought with him from Adelaide and it’s fair to say prior to the last couple of months he was just treading water with a rating in the low 50s and in early October had a record of two wins from 19 starts.
That now reads five from 22 and Super is rated 74 and, after his stunning victory at Newcastle’s Hunter meeting, chases his fourth straight win in the Rosehill Bowling Club Handicap (1500m) where he opened a $6 chance with TAB.
Minervini said the key to the horse seems to be dry tracks and clear air.
“We’ve tried to identify why he has improved,’’ he said.
“I raced him during the winter and he’s just hopeless on any sort of soft track. Being a Sniztel I thought he would handle a heavy track but he’s an absolute duffer.
“We’ve tried to isolate his runs to the firmer tracks and I think he is a happier horse outside and finishing off rather than being inside other horses.
“That’s going to be a little bit tricky drawn one but I’ll leave that up to Hugh (Bowman) to navigate.
“I’d rather draw there than 17 so I’m quite comfortable there, if he’s midfield and can get off the fence at some stage, on his appearance and trackwork he’ll be right in the finish.”
Punter’s Intelligence sectional data showed Super ran a race best las 600m of 33.87, highlighted by a 10.39 from the 400m-200m, as he rounded them up to score at Newcastle.
Minervini is hoping to squeeze Super into next month’s Group 2 Villiers Stakes (1600m) at Randwick so another win is nothing short of critical.
“We’ll get through Saturday first,’’ he said.
“My only query would be that Rosehill is a tighter track than what we’d prefer and back to 1500m. Overall I’m happy where he’s at. He looks outstanding to my eye, he hasn’t left an oat and has worked strongly.”
Super wins at Newcastle on November 14
A Group race at Randwick next month is also Mark Newnham’s aim with Fulmina who resumes against Super on Saturday.
The four-year-old, who was also nominated for the Festival Stakes, hasn’t raced since she won over 1800m at Randwick on August 1 and Newnham is eyeing the Group 3 Summer Cup (2000m) on Boxing Day.
“I threw a nom in for the other race just in case it didn’t come up that strong but it has so her day in that grade can wait,’’ he said.
“I’m hopeful about the Summer Cup but her form will or won’t warrant that.”