Returning to racing with an impressive victory over classy competition in the Sportingbet Handicap Open (1500m) on August 23rd, trainer Peter Gelgotis has revealed talented stayer Mourinho will next target the featured Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley on September 6th.
Unable to hit peak condition over five starts through the 2014 Autumn Carnival, Mourinho is a proven performer in black type events through spring, having won the Group 3 JRA Cup (2040m) and claimed a minor place in the Listed Cranbourne Cup (2025m) most notably in 2013.
Understandably thrilled with Mourinho’s performance first-up last week, Gelagotis said he was not expecting such a positive result so early, but is now confident of added success through the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival.
“I went there with an open mind,” Gelagotis told Racing Ahead of Mourinho’s first-up run.
“I just want to see the horses run well hitting the line and I would have been very satisfied if they had run a nice four, fifth or sixth hitting the line.
“They are the top horses in our stable and they have all started their preparations in fine fashion.
“It is onwards and upwards and it is exciting times ahead.
“Hopefully we can pick off some of the spring riches.”
Delivering the Gelgotis stable a rare race quinella, with exciting stable mate Hvasstan running on for second, the Moe trainer said each runner has well and truly earned a shot at an event in greater company.
“They are both Moonee Valley specialists and we are going to try and keep them there as much as we can,” Gelagotis said.
“There are a couple of Moonee Valley meetings coming up and Mourinho will definitely go to the Dato and we just need to make a decision whether we clash the two again or we take the softer option with Hvasstan.”
Securing a commendable total of six wins and six minor places from just 27 competitive starts so far, Mourinho finished a close second in the Group 3 TAB Rewards Stakes (1400m) first-up on March 1st this year, and continued to figure in competitive position when sixth in the Listed Golden Mile (1600m) and fifth in the Listed Albury Gold Cup (2000m) most notably.
A final field and barrier draw for the 2014 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes is due to be released by Wednesday, September 3rd.
Leading online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au is currently offering the best early odds on all major races through the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival!