Sam Pritchard-Gordon is excited about the opportunity presented by Mutual Trust’s arrival at his Mornington stable.
Mutual Trust is a Northern Hemisphere four-year-old who has been purchased by an Australian syndicate, including prominent owners Andrew Ramsden, Adam Sangster and Peter Barnett, with a view to tackle Australian features.
A Group 1 winner at three, the son of Cacique disappointed in a three-start American campaign earlier this year and Pritchard-Gordon is looking forward to being given the chance to revitalise the entire in what are still the early stages of his training career.
“I shouldn’t necessarily be getting horses like this yet, but hopefully I can rejuvenate his career, which has come to a bit of a standstill,” the Englishman said.
“He’s a ripping good horse with a fantastic pedigree and looks to match. He’s a striking black horse, but he’s more Australian than he is European in his physique. He’s all muscle and there’s very much a lot of Danehill about him.”
Pritchard-Gordon suspects 1600m will be Mutual Trust’s ideal trip, but is hopeful of him running a strong 2000m.
After winning his first four starts for legendary French trainer Andre Fabre, culminating with the Group 1 Prix Jean Prat (1600m) in July last year, Mutual Trust was unplaced at the final start of his three-year-old season before sent to the United States for his four-year-old season.
Bill Mott oversaw Mutual Trust’s American campaign, but he failed to place in three starts at distances ranging from 1400m to 1800m.
The Australian syndicate acquired Mutual Trust early in spring at what Pritchard Gordon described as a “very realistic price” and he landed in Melbourne at the weekend after completing three weeks quarantine in New Zealand.
“I put him under saddle and he was everything he was described as in the vetting and the pre-sales purchase,” the trainer said. “He’s a beautiful animal with a lovely temperament.”
Mutual Trust is likely to be nominated for the $1 million Dubai Australian Cup, to be run at Flemington on 9 March, but Prichard-Gordon said Sydney or Brisbane might be a more realistic aim for his initial Aussie campaign.
“We’ve got a horse that is probably a very genuine miler, but I would like to think he’ll get out to 10 furlongs,” he said.
“Whether we’ll be aiming for an Australian Cup remains to be seen, I’d like to think he could do, but then again he’s a colt that has only been doing light work in the last four to five months as opposed to racing, so it could take a lot longer to get him fit.”
Story by Brad Bishop