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Star pacer Colt Thirty One closing in on historic milestone
Rockhampton Cup travel package the way to go
By Glenn Davis
Bowen trainer Andrew Cameron won’t be surprised to see consistent sprinter El Shaday back in the winner’s list at Townsville’s Cluden Park on Thursday.
El Shaday and stablemate So You Dream will clash in the Benchmark 75 Handicap over 1000 metres.
El Shaday registered his last win in Cairns in December and is coming off four straight placings, including his latest second to the John Manzelmann-trained Raiden at Home Hill on April 10.
“He’s a revelation and just keeps trying and trying,” Cameron said.
“He likes to lead in his races and he’ll be hard to beat if he gets to the front again.”
El Shaday carries a rare condition called “Shivers” which is a chronic muscular disorder.
The muscle disorder makes it difficult for horses to hold up the hind limbs and they walk with an unusual gait when going backwards.
“It’s a neurological condition, with him he can’t urinate unless he cocks his hind leg like a dog,” Cameron said.
“We have to work him like a steeple chaser and let him run for miles.”
El Shaday has won five races for Cameron and will again be ridden by Chelsea Jokic who has partnered the seven-year-old in 11 of his past 12 starts.
“I’d be in big trouble with Chelsea if I took her off him,” Cameron said.
Cameron, a former New Zealander, believes So You Dream may need the run at his first start since winning at Mackay in November.
“This is more a kick-off run for So You Dream,” he said.
“He won five races last campaign and deserves a crack at some of the better races during the winter up here.
“His best distance is 1300 to 1400 metres but he can get to 1600 meters – just.”
Cameron trains a small team of 10-12 horses at Bowen where he has almost exclusive use of the club’s training facilities.
“I’ve been here for 10 years after I closed my stables in New Zealand and decided to drive trucks,” he said.
“I moved over here and got the bug back to start training again after I started driving horse trucks again at the Gold Coast.
“I did a trip driving around Australia with my partner Lisa and we saw Bowen and decided it was a nice place to settle and start training again.
“Lisa used to work for Bryan Guy and we started off buying a couple of horses which Bryan trained at a tried horse sale.”