Classy Southland pacer back fast-working


Captain Dolmio is back on the New Zealand Cup trail.

The classy pacer, developed in Gore by Matt Brinsdon but trained last year by Robert Dunn, hasn't raced since the 2017 Easter Cup.

The Grinfromeartoear gelding was spelled after that effort, in which he clocked 3:59.1 finishing second to Heaven Rocks.

After returning to Dunn in the spring, he performed well at a workout and trial in August before John Dunn noticed a problem in a hind leg.

“An x-ray showed a bruised bone in a back fetlock,” Dunn said.

Brinsdon noted that four months of complete rest was needed, and because there weren't going be a lot of races for him once he was fit again, it was better to leave him out until May.

“I jogged him for six weeks and he was showing no signs of being sore - no hold ups at all,” Brinsdon said. “He went back to the Dunns about a month ago.”

John Dunn has also given a good report and reckons the six-year-old might be ready for a workout early next month.

“He's been bowling along and seems really good,” said Dunn, who drove Captain Dolmio to win over 3200 metres in the Tuapeka Cup, and when second over the same trip in 3:55.2 in the Invercargill Cup.

However, Nathan Williamson was aboard in the Easter Cup while Dunn took the reins of Franco Nelson.

He was aboard Robbie Burns in last year's New Zealand Cup, Alto Orlando in the Easter, and victory in either race still eludes him.

“Alta Orlando will also be aimed at the cup but I won't necessarily be driving him, Captain Dolmio is not a bad horse and he's gone well in the best of company, we'll wait and see.”

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