The comeback win of Red Excitement at Rosehill has prompted a rare show of emotion from trainer Gerald Ryan.
The five-year-old led all the way to take out the 1400m Benchmark 95 on Saturday’s program at his first start since he injured a tendon during a race at Randwick in February.
“He didn’t bow the tendon but he whacked his leg in the race and weakened the fibres,” Ryan said.
“We didn’t send him for a spell. Instead we kept him going back and forth between the stable and Tim Boland’s place at Limitless Lodge.
“He did a lot of walking and then he would go to Tim’s and spend time on the water walker.
“It gives me a lot of satisfaction to see him come back and win and it does make me emotional.”
Red Excitement’s jockey Brenton Avdulla also felt the occasion.
“He makes me want to cry,” he said. He is just such a tough horse.
“He was beaten 100 metres out and just came again.”
Burbero ($11) loomed up but Red Excitement ($4.40) kicked back to win by a short neck with the $4.20 favourite You’ll Never another head third.
Red Excitement had been scheduled to make his return last Saturday in the Listed Razor Sharp (1200m) but Ryan chose not to run him on the rain-affected track.
He will get his chance at a stakes race next month with the Listed Chester Manifold Stakes (1400m) at Flemington the target.
“There isn’t anything for him here,” Ryan said.
“I thought about Queensland but there is a chance the tracks will be wet.
“And I don’t want to take him to Gosford on Cup day because I don’t think the track would suit him.”