By Isaac Murphy
While all eyes were on kennel star Oh Mickey winning the Young Guns last Thursday, Aston Lee was able to fly under the radar winning his first start for Selena and Mick Zammit, but his anonymity won’t last for long according to the kennel who have the youngster on a path to the Group 3 Flying Amy and possibly beyond.
Mick Zammit said spirits had been riding high with the successful transition of Oh Mickey and the continued success of Stinger Noir, but the addition of another exciting young pup and the return of the explosive Sequana had the kennel poised for a big winter.
“Jason (Mackay) gave us a call and told us a little bit about him (Aston Lee) and with the zoning in NSW he was stuck racing the same dogs every week where he was starting at $1.20 and he needed a change,” Mick Zammit said.
“I’m not exactly sure how long he’s going to be with us, it all depends on what happens with restrictions up here as well as down there, so we’re going to try to make the most of it while we have him.
“The small amount of work we’ve seen him do up here backs up Jason (Mackay) in that he’s very talented and he looks to have handled the trip up well.”
Aston Lee hit the ground running in Queensland, with a slick post-to-post enough for the Zammits to put him in the first Thursday they had him.
“He’s only had one trial up here and he went 24.07 post to post, which we were rapt with but tried to keep a lid on it race conditions are always another thing,” Mick said.
“He was good in winning and we were pleased overall but definitely thought he might have gone a bit quicker (29.98), but in hindsight a young dog having a kennel change seven days earlier probably had an effect.
“He went 12.78 home which by no means is slow, but on the bunny like he was I think he can shave some significant time of his closing section and he can probably get out a bit quicker than 5.63, we’ve only had him a short amount of time we’re still figuring him out ourselves.”
Lightly raced with just the 15 starts for 11 wins has worked well for Aston Lee in Queensland, the dog very well graded along with kennel mate Sequana on the road to the Flying Amy.
“Aston Lee’s first target will be the Flying Amy in early June, I know we’ll at least have him until then after that it’s up to connections whether they want to stay on,” Mick said.
“He’s still a fifth grader on a Thursday night, so he has a good few weeks of racing in lower company before he’s asked to step up to Group level.
“The only thing we’re worried about this week is him and Sequana meeting each other as she returns into fifth grade company, her first race since February.”