Peter Nestor has had a tough time finding a race for Danish Lace but the Dubbo trainer is confident his star sprinter has what it takes to win Sunday’s $35,000 Bill Aspros Cup at Bathurst.
One of the many highlights during a bumper showcase meeting at Tyers Park, the 1200m sprint feature attracted a field of just seven.
Danish Lace, with eight wins and 14 placings from 33 starts, is one of the premier short-distance gallopers in the region but due to her success and increasing rating it has been hard for Nestor to place her.
Country races are hard to come by and, as Nestor explained, it’s not easy to find a suitable metro event.
“It’s hard to find races out here and you go down there and you can carry 61kg so it makes it tough,” Nestor said.
“Weight (is an issue) and there was a couple that looked too strong for her (in metro races).
“It’s a long way to go, especially towards the end of a preparation and that’s where she is so we like to keep her as close to home as we can.”
Nestor has nominated her for a number of events – at country, provincial and metro tracks – recently but Danish Lace still hasn’t raced since a dominant win in the Gilgandra Town Plate on January 7.
The prestigious Bill Aspros was one Nestor had his eye on while the $40,000 Lightning Handicap (1100m) at Quirindi was also a potential target.
The showcase meeting at Quirindi is on February 16 and Nestor could potentially nominate Danish Lace for that race as well.
“The Aspros and the Lightning at Quirindi were what we were looking at, both good prizemoney,” Nestor said, before speaking about Danish Lace’s trial win at Narromine earlier this month.
“Trialled really nice the other day. It had a been a month since she raced so she needed it.
“I didn’t really want her to go quite as hard as she did but did it easy and she came out of it really well.
“She’s as good as gold. She’ll be there.”
Kaylee Kirkwood will again be in the saddle on Sunday, the apprentice having ridden Danish Lace for six wins in 16 starts.
They will jump from barrier four with Kirkwood’s 1.5kg claim offsetting the 62kg top weight Danish Lace was handed.
“The mare goes good for her (Kirkwood) and she lets her do her own thing and there’s no point breaking a winning partnership,” Nestor said.
“She rides her for all her work and she’s a good kid.”
While Danish Lace is renowned for leading form start to finish, Nestor stated he has “no issue” with Kirkwood taking a sit if others put on the pace early.
Sunday is Danish Lace’s 11th start this preparation.
Racing at Bathurst starts at 1.41pm with the Bill Aspros Cup at 2.51pm.