Change of for­tune

Un­lucky Mala­guerra chas­ing a de­served G1

The Sportsman Weekend - - news - ADAM SHERRY

TRAINER Pe­ter Ge­lago­tis is hop­ing luck will be on the side of his gal­lant sprinter Mala­guerra when he chases a Group 1 win in to­mor­row’s Win­ter­bot­tom Stakes at As­cot.

The seven-year-old re­sumed from a long spell in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes at Moonee Val­ley last month and should have fin­ished closer than his five and a half length 12th be­hind Brave Smash, Spirit Of Valor Ke­men­tari ac­cord­ing to his trainer.

“It was a bit un­for­tu­nate, we never had our pre­mium chance to par­tic­i­pate,” Ge­lago­tis said.

“Bar­rier 1 can be a good gate at times and re­ally awk­ward gate at times. Un­for­tu­nately, it wasn’t to be his day and went against us.

“He wanted get go­ing but had to wait as the oth­ers took off and he had to try and pick up quickly give chase.

“Then nearly got put over the fence at the 100m mark. He didn’t have much joy.

“He has set­tled in re­ally well here in Perth.

“He’s happy and re­laxed. En­joy­ing his time away from home.”

Two years ago, the son of Mag­nus ven­tured west to tackle the Win­ter­bot­tom and it was also a case of what might have been.

The geld­ing fin­ished a length fifth be­hind Take­down but should have gone close to win­ning on that oc­ca­sion.

“Again, he was ex­tremely un­lucky day as well.

“He never got a crack at them on the fence again.

“He went to make his run and there was nowhere to go. He just had to wait.

While Mala­guerra hasn’t won since the Group 2 Aus­tralia Stakes at Moonee Val­ley in Jan­uary last year, he has only seven starts since then — all Group 1 com­pany.

He turned up for his Perth as­sign­ment with a Cran­bourne bar­rier trial win on Novem­ber 12 and will have the blink­ers on for the first time.

“He’s been with­out a lot of luck in re­cent times.

“You need ev­ery­thing to go right the big races and he’s just had no luck.

“I hate mak­ing ex­cuses. You have to be able to an­a­lyse a race and say where did we go wrong, where did we fail or what was against us.

“The bot­tom line is there has been a cou­ple of runs that he hasn’t had lot luck.

“If you hang in there long enough, should get your re­ward.

“He’s due for a change of luck and hope­fully he can get an­other Group 1 this week­end.

Trainer Pe­ter Ge­lago­tis is hop­ing luck will be on Mala­guerra’s side in to­mor­row’s Win­ter­bot­tom Stakes.

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