A late decision to roll the dice and run Albumin on a wet track at Rosehill has paid dividends with the ghostly grey grabbing victory in a photo finish.
Trainers Gerald Ryan and Sterling Alexiou were all but resigned to dodging Saturday’s Rosehill meeting with Albumin until the long-term weather forecast for Melbourne changed their minds.
The six-year-old’s best form is on firm ground and with Rosehill rated a soft 7, the pair were leaning towards scratching him from the Listed Ortensia Stakes (1100m) to save him for an interstate assignment a week later.
They even stopped short of booking a jockey after his regular rider Jay Ford accepted the mount on rival Adelong.
“Originally, we didn’t put a rider down when Jay couldn’t ride because all the intention was to scratch and run at Flemington next weekend down the straight,” Alexiou said.
“But the main owner lives in Melbourne and he said there is little to no possibility of it being dry down there next week, so he had to go around today.
“We brought four horses here today that probably didn’t handle wet tracks that had to go around and he’s got one on the board for us anyway.”
Albumin has a liking for the 1100m course at Rosehill, which he has now won over five times.
Sent out at the double-figure odds of $14, Albumin got the verdict by a nose over Surreal Step ($16) with Adelong ($6.50) another 1-1/4 lengths in arrears.
Alexiou’s five-year-old daughter Mya has taken a liking to Albumin but she was not on course to see her favourite horse win after heading home early because she was cold.
“Normally she cries when he doesn’t win, so hopefully now she’s crying because he’s won,” Alexiou said.