Big task in front of Mystic Max
By Jonny Turner
Michael Purdon has a word of warning for punters ahead of the return of his classy trotter Mystic Max at Addington on Friday night.
And it has nothing to do with his ability.
The three-year-old will step out for the first time since his second placing at the Harness Jewels in race 2.
For many it may appear the biggest challenge for the horse is to negotiate his first standing start.
But that is not something Purdon is too worried about.
“He is a really well-mannered colt, though he is not blistering from a stand,” the trainer said.
“Being first up against the older horses I am not too worried about that, I just want to see him get a bit of cover, especially first time over 2600m.”
What the trainer is more concerned about is how the horse will present fitness wise.
The three-year-old has had a decent break from racing and has done well, which means he won’t strip at his peak for driver Blair Orange.
“He has come up good, I am happy with him but I definitely think he is going to need the run on Friday night.”
“He has had a good spell has he has grown out a lot and being a colt he has kept quite a bit of fat on him.”
“We will line up, with it being his first time against the older horses I will ask Blair to drive him a bit quieter.”
It looks like a case of if he’s close enough to the leaders for Mystic Max.
If the three-year-old is within striking range on the turn he should still take a power of beating.
Safely through Friday night’s run the trotter is likely to have one more start before heading north to tackle the Northern Trotting Derby and the Sires Stakes Series for three-year-old trotters.
Purdon also lines up Nortie Nortie in race 4.
The gelding cast a shoe in his last outing at Nelson which could be best forgotten.
Nortie Nortie was a good winner prior, cruising to victory on the first day of the recent Nelson two-day meeting.
From the second row on Friday night, Purdon is hoping his three-year-old can be finishing on better than most.
“He is drawn 3 on the second row but the second emergency is inside him.”
“It shouldn’t be a bad draw for him, hopefully Blair can use his speed from there.”
“He has taken on good horses before like Highgrove and Mystic Max, so in that field I would expect him to go a good race.”
Blair Orange also takes the reins behind Nortie Nortie.