Doubts around Dream About Me
By Michael Guerin
Champion trainer Mark Purdon is as blunt as possible in assessing Dream About Me’s chances when New Zealand’s best pacing mare returns to Addington tonight.
“She will desperately need the run,” says Purdon matter-of-factly.
So while Dream About Me is by far the best performed horse in the National Handicap, Purdon doubts the former Auckland Cup winner will beat stablemate Thefixer, let alone win the race.
Dream About Me hasn’t raced since a luckless New Zealand Cup week last November, with hoof issues curtailing a season that earlier saw her push Lazarus to a half neck in the Flying Stakes at Ashburton.
The now six-year-old millionairess has had four trials to prepare her for tonight’s comeback but most have been quiet affairs and Purdon is adamant she will need the run.
“We have brought quite a few of ours up a little later this season and she is a big mare anyway so I’d be happy to see her running on,” he says.
“I would be pretty confident Thefixer would be too forward for her.”
Punters might still be tempted by each way odds for Dream About Me as she comes in well at the handicaps and Purdon’s often cautious approach to his fresh runners have proven wrong before.
But the reality is he will be happy to see driver Tim Williams relax Dream About Me and let her run on so for all her class even her biggest fans might be better off watching rather than punting tonight.
Thefixer is also fresh up from two wins at Cup week last November but is a more streamlined pacer and therefore forward enough to win but he is by no means a good thing as the Rovert Dunn stable have two reps who have looked more advanced than the Purdon-Rasmussen pair at recent public outings.
Letspendanitetogetha beat Alta Orlando, who has been scratched from tonight;’s race, and another stablemate Captain Dolmio at the most recent Rangiora workout that all of tonight’s big players lined up in.
A lot will depend on the tempo of the race and who gets the best run in what could be a game of cat and mouse but victory for Letspendanitetogetha or Captain Dolmio wouldn’t surprise.
Purdon will watch the race from Victoria where he is putting the final touches on his powerful pair for Saturday night’s Breeders Crown finals at Melton.
He is thrilled with unbeaten filly Princess Tiffany before her A$290,000 juvenile pace final while Another Masterpiece is also spot on heading into the boy’s equivalent but faces a second line draw.
“Princess Tiffany has handled the season incredibly well and she is as good if not better than she has been all year. I can’t fault her,” says Purdon.
“Another Masterpiece is also good but might have to sit parked which is a hard way to win.”
Purdon will also drive trotting filly Show Gait for young Canterbury trainer Regan Todd and says she worked the best she has this campaign yesterday morning and is the horse to beat in her A$70,000 final.