Jockey Anthony Darmanin will reunite with Jerilderie Letter at Flemington when the Tasmanian Derby-winning three-year-old bids to end his first Victorian campaign on a winning note.
Tasmanian trainer Adam Trinder has nominated Jerilderie Letter for two races on Saturday and is planning to start him in the 1600m benchmark-90 against older horses.
Jerilderie Letter was an eye-catching fourth at his first Melbourne start at Caulfield this month with apprentice Jake Bayliss aboard.
He backed up seven days later to finish third, under topweight of 60kg against his own age, in the Silver Bowl Series Final when ridden by Steven Arnold.
With Jerilderie Letter on the minimum weight of 54kg on Saturday, Darmanin gets the chance to get back aboard.
Darmanin’s wins on Jerilderie Letter include three at Listed level culminating in the Tasmanian Derby.
“The Silver Bowl Final was his main objective for the preparation. But my main mindset was just with the weather patterns, to bring him home he would have been going straight to the paddock and it’s cold and wet,” he said.
He decided to keep him in training in Victoria for another fortnight to not only give Jerilderie Letter another chance to win in Melbourne but also hoping for nicer weather once he returns home for a break before he is targeted at the Tasmanian summer carnival.
Trinder said Jerilderie Letter had been brave in his two Melbourne starts and the drop in weight, even though he’ll be against older horses, is key to his chances on Saturday.
“He went super at Caulfield without any luck,” he said.
“He looked to have every opportunity in the Silver Bowl Final and I was really proud of him even in defeat.
“The biggest positive to come out of that was the comments from Steven Arnold post race.”
Trinder said Arnold suggested the gelding would not be out of place in a better race even though it would mean the heavyweight jockey would not be able to keep the ride.
“He’s just weighted out of these three-year-old races at the moment, hence he steps to a ratings race against older horses and gets down on the minimum of 54 kilos,” Trinder said.
Trinder said Jerilderie Letter had come through his latest run well and worked sharply at Burrumbeet on Monday.