All American 3yo Dark Dream is ready to run the race of his life in the G1 Queensland Derby (2200m) this Saturday.
The Kerry Parker-trained gelding was an early favourite for the classic following a dominant four-length win in the G3 Rough Habit Stakes (2000m) but eased in pre-post markets after going down a length in the G3 Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) on May 26.
Racing too keen was a factor last time out and there were some genuine excuses according to Parker. “He pulled a shoe but it didn’t come off normally, it got twisted and didn’t look too good when he returned to the mounting yard. He was also slightly lame so there were genuine excuses for the defeat.
“He missed some work before a light hit-out over 1200m on Saturday. He will have a solid gallop on Tuesday but he’s had plenty of racing so I’m not worried at all.
Parker admits there have been several international offers for Dark Dream but at this stage the horse will race into the spring where his main target will be the $ 5million G1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 20.
“He’s up there with the best I’ve had and there is no doubt in my mind that he will improve out of sight next preparation,” he said. “He’s still a baby in the head, that’s why I sent him to Queensland so early – because I wanted him to get used to being away and grow up a bit.
“We’ll get through Saturday first, send him for a spell and very much look forward to the spring.”
All American is back at Geisel Park for his second season in Western Australia this year and is priced at a $7,700 (inc gst) service fee. He sired Dark Dream from Buchanan Girl, an unraced daughter of Lion Hunter related to G1 Victoria Derby winners Nothin’ Leica Dane and Redding.
Dark Dream sits on the third line of betting at $6 chance for the Queensland Derby behind co-favourites Live And Free and Lucky For All at $4.50.