Purdon Racing goes into battle again at Alexandra Park Friday night and with some high powered chances but its main achievement lately would seem to be its maintenance operation.

“They all seem good.Come out of last week’s races in good heart.Some haven’t done much during this week because of the races but I am happy with way they have come through the racing.Its been a busy time” Mark said on Thursday 

Considering the racing some have done so far this season,especially that of Don’t Stop Dreaming having taken on races like the Hunter Cup at four and continued at Group One level since, that is a feat in itself 

“It’s something part of the job and we are used to it. At the moment we are not in a situation where we have to freshen them up as they are going over the top.They seem to be handling it well and they should all go well.

It’s a question really of assessing where they are at.Some need hoppling during the week some don’t. Self Assured ($21)and Don’t Stop Dreaming haven’t hoppled this week but Demon Blue (Young Guns Final) has,and he worked well. So its just a matter of handling it while you see it”

With three more meetings to come including the Roy Purdon Memorial Rowe Cup and the Auckland Cup the challenge is ongoing but Mark is especially pleased that Don’t Stop Dreaming ($2.40 favourite) has taken no harm from a rather rugged run in the Taylor Mile.

“Seems to be thriving. He has another unusual gate but it could work in his favour and the extra distance will be in his favour on his record. I would still rate him ahead of Self Assured who was a little unlucky last week though not very unlucky. 

I mean if he had got the run Mach Shard got he would have won it but as it was he did well without getting there so Don’t Stop Dreaming is still my top pick.He keeps doing it. Self Assured will probably go back as I think Better Eclipse next to us will and there’s an extra lap this week”

“Oscar looks as though he will get a similar run to last week from that gate but Just Believe is a special horse and we are probably running for second again.He’s thriving.

High Step ($7.20) bypassed last week which means there is a gap between races. But she bypassed it because I didn’t feel her work was good enough for a race like that. I don’t feel she has quite come up as well this time in so we have no big expectations from that point of view about how she will go”

Mark feels Demon Blue($2.45 favourite)  is a youngster with a bright future.

“What I like is that he is going on with it as he goes along. That is a good sign. Down the track I think he will be a prospect. In fact after tomorrow we will consider whether or not to take on the Welcome Stakes at Addington with him which we were not really considering earlier. It’s a rich race ($116,000,now Group One) and you have to give him the chance if he is going well enough”

Mark will be based in the north until the circuit ends then a break afterward and more news on his longer term plans is expected this weekend.

PIC: Oscar Bonavena-another clash with Just Believe


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