The revolving door that represents the change in fortunes in racing is always moving … and trainer Danny O’Brien can attest to that.
With his 2019 Melbourne Cup winner Vow And Declare disappointingly sidelined for the Spring, O’Brien will welcome the well-performed Callsign Mav into his yard in the near future … but that will only be after the Atlante gelding’s scheduled run in the Cox Plate on October 23.
The 2021 Cox Plate will be the five-year-old’s last run for New Zealand trainer John Bary, who has guided Callsign Mav’s career throughout his eighteen starts to date for an impressive return of six wins and six runner-up finishes … with two of those wins being back-to-back successes in the Group 1 Tarzino Trophy.
Some unfinished business remains in New Zealand before Callsign Mav makes the move to Australia though … and Bary believes that his charge can sign off in style by taking out the Group 1 Windsor Park Plate at Hastings on Saturday.
“It would be great to see him leave New Zealand racing on a winning note, not just for me and the owners, but also for the staff. It’s a big team effort and they get just as much of a kick out of seeing him win as I do,” Bary told the New Zealand Racing Desk.
Callsign Mav is at the restrictive odds of $1.80 for the Windsor Park Plate.
“After the Cox Plate, he’ll stay in Australia and finish his career over there with Danny,” continued Bary.
Bary will not be able to get to Melbourne to oversee Callsign Mav’s final preparation for the Cox Plate.
“It’s frustrating but we’ve planned the best we can, and we’ve done everything we can to have him compete in a Cox Plate to the best of his ability,” Bary said.
If Callsign Mav can get the result in the Cox Plate, it would not only be a fitting finale for Bary in terms of his association with that runner, but it would also mean that Bary would have set his Cox Plate record straight … ten years after finishing second with Jimmy Choux (behind Pinker Pinker) in the 2011 edition of the big race.
Danny O’Brien, amongst others, will be watching Callsign Mav’s progress with a keen interest.