By Glenn Davis
A midfield draw hasn’t dented trainer Matt Dunn’s hopes of star sprinter Care To Think bouncing back to form in the Listed Lough Neagh Stakes at Doomben on Saturday.
Care To Think is second-up in the 1350-metre feature and will jump from barrier eight with last start rider Ryan Maloney back on board.
“The draw is okay and it’s not the end of the world but I would have preferred to draw a little closer,” Dunn said.
Care To Think has been plagued with wide draws throughout his career but had a rare change of luck when he had the rails when fifth in his first-up run behind I’m A Rippa in the Group 3 George Moore Stakes at Doomben on December 1.
Care To Think is on target for successive Magic Millions Cups at the Gold Coast next month after making a “successful” comeback in the George Moore Stakes.
Dunn warned before the George Moore that Care To Think was underdone for his first up assignment and was more concerned about his first run since undergoing throat surgery following his Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap failure at Doomben in June.
“His breathing was good last start which is the main thing but he completely bungled the start which is unusual for him,” Dunn said.
“The good thing was he ran the equal fastest last 600 metres of the day with Victorem and the quickest last 200 metres of the day.”
Dunn has always had a big opinion of Care To Think who was once rated a potential Group 1 winner by champion Sydney trainer Chris Waller.
Dunn considered running Care To Think in the Doncaster Handicap at Randwick in the autumn before aborting plans to concentrate on the Stradbroke.
After his throat surgery, Dunn aimed Care To Think at the $1m The Kosciusko in Sydney before he was ruled out with an elevated temperature on race eve.
Care To Think was one of the stars of last year’s Summer Carnival when he won three successive races including the Magic Millions Cup at the Gold Coast.
The $1 million Magic Millions Cup (1400m) at the Gold Coast on January 12 is again his major summer target after he tackles the Listed The Buffering (1350m) at Doomben on December 29.
Dunn has four other acceptors including The Fire Tap who drew barrier 11 in the Group 3 Gold Edition Plate (1350m).
The Fire Tap ran third to Zoustyle and Boomsara at Doomben on December 1 and is being aimed at the $2 million Magic Millions Guineas (1400m).
“The Fire Trap is going good and he just wasn’t fit for his last run,” he said.
“I missed a race with him when he had a foot problem but he’s good now.”
Racing Queensland webnews December 12