Beautifully-bred mare Calpe heads to Dubbo on Wednesday looking for a much-needed confidence boost.
The four-year-old will have her first start for three-time premier country trainer Brett Cavanough in the Dubbo RSL Club Family Bistro Maiden (1100m).
Formerly with Clarry Conners at Warwick Farm, Calpe, a daughter of Rock Of Gibraltar out of smart mare Unison, had eight starts for Conners managing two placings.
Owned by Richard Pegum, Calpe has been in Cavanough’s Albury stable for three months.
“A well-bred mare that has had a few problems but the aim Sis to try and win a maiden to get her confidence levels up,” Cavanough said.
“She’s a really good type, low-set and strong.
“We’re hoping if she can win a maiden she can go bang, bang and win a couple more races.”
Cavanough wouldn’t elaborate on the “problems”, but said the mare was in good order for Dubbo.
“We’ve been working on the problems, injuries, she’s going to the races 100 per cent right physically,” he said.
“I’m happy with where she’s at.”
Calpe has run some useful races in Sydney and the provincial areas in far better class than she meets on Wednesday.
“We’ve been trying to teach her to travel better, working with a mate and getting her to settle and hit the line strongly, not come off the bridle when asked to let down,” Cavanough said.
“The mare has pleased me. She’s no superstar but if she gets some confidence it may well be a far different story.”
Calpe hasn’t raced since her 2-3/4-length fifth to She’s Choice over 1300m at Wyong on November 25.
Cavanough will also saddle up Prorogue for Pegum in the Dubbo RSL Club Keno and Tab Maiden (1300m).
The New Zealand bred three-year-old gelding has been runner-up at his past two starts at Corowa and Albury.
Cavanough didn’t mince words when assessing the gelding’s chances.
“A slow horse who has been placed in two weak maidens. We’re trying again,” he said.
Prorogue faces two interesting rivals in debutant Altonio, a recent Scone trial winner from the Leon Davies yard, and Stakhanov, a Greg Ryan mount with his hoof right on the till trained by Luke Griffith.