This afternoon Tony McEvoy’s in-form veteran Mr Chard will continue his excellent comeback campaign jumping one of the top fancies in the 2014 Rowley Mile at Hawkesbury.
Currently leading the Ladbrokes.com.au markets for the $100,000 Listed ILG XXXX Gold Hawkesbury Rowley Mile (1600m) at a firming price of $4.60, the seven-year-old son of Al Samer comes off back-to-back wins this prep.
The stallion was previously prepared by Dean Lawson under whose training he failed to run top three since a win in the Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Flemington back in October of 2010.
Mr Chard was injured in his last run for Lawson when 11th to Loveyamadly in a Moonee Valley black-type in March last year spending over a year sidelined.
A stable change and return to racing followed over 70 weeks later with Mr Chard kicking off for McEvoy on July 26 at Morphettville having recovered from the suspensory injury.
That first-up Adelaide run was promising too with the galloper running under half a length away second to Mr Good Cat over 1100m.
The form held then when he travelled back to Melbourne for a run in the Group 3 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m) down the Flemington straight on August 9.
Just a long neck separated Mr Chard from Group 1 The Galaxy winner Tiger Tees that day, an effort hinting at more good form to follow starting today at Hawkesbury where he gets up to a more suitable distance.
“I’m very proud of the horse for the way he has come back and found form,” McEvoy told AAP this week.
“I said to the owners that because he had such a long time off he was going to need a couple of sprint races which were over unsuitable distances.
“This is the first race this preparation, in my opinion, that he has been suited in.”
Drawn in barrier six (into four) Mr Chard will be ridden by Kerrin McEvoy this afternoon in the Rowley Mile where his trainer has a stable set-up and shoots for back-to-back wins following Mouro’s win in May last year.
They are battling to hold top spot in betting with a trio of other genuine hopes with the Chris Waller-trained I’m Imposing ($4.80), 2014 Caulfield Cup bound mare La Amistad ($5) who is a close relation to triple Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva and Stayer’s Cup winner over the two miles Destiny’s Kiss ($5) hot on his heels.
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