Trainer Tony Gollan has been thrilled with the form and class displayed by Fontelina this time and is confident the horse is primed for a big run and success in Saturday’s featured Group 3 George Moore Stakes (1200m) at Doomben.
Fontelina began his racing career under the guidance of Anthony Cummings and has been a strong and consistent performer since first appearing on course competitively in 2011; posting six wins and a further four minors through a total of 32 starts.
Returning to racing this time for a credible fifth amongst talented company in the Listed Lightning (1100m) at Randwick on October 17th, the Testa Rossa gelding didn’t handle the heavy going when ninth in the Group 2 Salinger Stakes (1200m) at Flemington most recently on October 31st.
Fontelina has reportedly taken well to work since his return to Queensland and is ready for a return to winning form in the 2015 George Moore Stakes.
“He’s going great this horse, his first-up run at Randwick was terrific,” Gollan told Racing Ahead.
“He was caught in the wrong part of the track on Derby Day, exposed all the way – it’s not his go up the straight.
“He’s back in Brisbane in great shape, and he’s probably one of our leading chances.”
Several times places at Group 1 level, Fontelina arguably found career-best form to date as a five-year-old; returning in the spring of 2013 for second behind Rebel Dane in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) and success in the Group 2 Yellowglen Stakes (1200m) and returning to the paddock after finishing fourth in the Group 1 VRC Sprint Classic (1200m).
Failing to make anything of an impact when resuming in 2014 for 13th in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m), Fontelina progressed to an agonizingly-close second to Gollan-trained runner Spirit Of Boom in the Group 1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) before injury forced the gelding into the paddock for more than a year.
Having failed to make anything of an impact through autumn and winter this year, Fontelina was transferred to the care of Gollan in Brisbane, with a view towards running on firm tracks.
The 2015 George Moore Stakes final field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday.
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