Trainer Graeme Rogerson believes his talented galloper More Wonder is ready for a break-out season in 2019/20.
The Mossman gelding won twice during his three-year-old campaign but looked unlucky not to register a victory at the highest level, finishing in the top five on four separate occasions at Group One level.
“I think he is a very good horse who didn’t get a lot of luck in those bigger races,” Rogerson said.
“He probably should have won a Group One but the way he is coming up for his new campaign, I think he will be able to rectify that.
“I got the feeling something wasn’t quite right with him towards the end of the season and when we had him checked out, he needed a minor operation to remove a chip off a fetlock.
“He has had that cleaned up and looks a million dollars.”
Rogerson, who prepares the gelding with wife Debbie and grand-daughter Bailey under their Team Rogerson banner, will adopt a patient approach with his charge as he eyes the three Group One features during the Hastings Spring carnival, which kicks off on August 31.
“We’ve got him nominated for all three of the Group One races at Hastings so that is what we are working towards with him,” he said.
“He will most likely trial in August and then we will go from there. He won’t be starting in the Foxbridge Plate (Gr.2 1200m) at Te Rapa so we will look at something else for him.”
While Rogerson is looking forward to getting More Wonder back on the track, he also has high hopes for his rising two-year-old half-brother by Tavistock, who has excelled in recent jump-outs at Rogerson’s Tuhikaramea property.
“I think the Tavistock half-brother to More Wonder is a very very nice horse,” he said.
“We have had a couple of jump-outs at home and he has done everything right.
“He’s coming along nicely so he will be one to watch when he gets to the track.”
Rogerson was also thrilled to put a win on the board for jumping legend Ann Browne, when Raisafuasho took out the maiden steeplechase at Te Rapa on Saturday.
“It was just fantastic to get that win for Ann as she is very close to our family,” Rogerson said.
“We’ve had a lot to do with Ann and her late husband Ken over the years so I really wanted to put that win on the board.
“He will be set for the Pakuranga Hunt Cup (4900m) in late August and then the Great Northern Steeplechase (6400m) after that.
“Steeplechasing looks to be his forte now so if we could win either of those races, that the Browne’s dominated so many years, it would be a fairy-tale result.” – NZ Racing Desk