Former Singapore galloper Magnum had his spring campaign cut short through injury, but will make a return to racing in the Gr.3 J Swap Contractors Sprint (1400m) at Te Rapa on Saturday.
The Lauren Brennan-trained gelding was in fine form during spring, recording a fresh-up win at Ruakaka in Sepetember before running third behind Te Akau Shark in the Gr.3 Spring Sprint (1400m) at Hastings in October.
However, he punctured the sole of his hoof during that last-start effort and his connections had to cut short the rest of their spring racing plans with the six-year-old.
“He won his first start at Ruakaka over 1200m then going into the Red Badge Sprint, we were just as happy with him going into that,” Brennan said.
“It was just unfortunate that he stood on something in that race and punctured his sole.
“We were going to go to Tauranga for the Group Two mile (Tauranga Stakes), or the open 1400m race, but obviously with his sole being like it was we had to scrap that idea and as it works out I think this 1400m race is a better option.”
Magnum has made a pleasing return for Brennan, winning his 1000m trial heat at Matmata two weeks ago.
“I was very happy with the trial, it was his first run in nearly two months,” Brennan said.
“Jason (Waddell, jockey) has trialed him a number of times for us now and has ridden him in one start and he said it’s the best he has felt this time round, so I can’t ask for more than that.
“I am very happy with him leading into this.”
The son of Per Incanto could have a lucrative summer instore, with the Gr.2 Rich Hill Mile (1600m) at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day and the Gr.1 Thorndon Mile (1600m) at Trentham on January 19 on his radar.
“We will reassess after this race and a possibility would be the Rich Hill Mile on New Year’s Day,” Brennan said.
“We have also put in a nomination for the Thorndon Mile. We’ll take it race-by-race, but that’s probably the ultimate aim.” – NZ Racing Desk