Sonador’s shoe fits for Big Mile

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Oakey trainer Roger Milne says a gear change is a crucial pointer to the fitness of G1 Epsom Handicap winner Captain Sonador in the lead-up to Saturday’s G1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick.

Milne has removed the glue-on shoes from Captain Sonador’s gear, replacing them with normal race plates, a move he said showed how well the stallion is going.

“When he left Melbourne, he ripped a shoe off on the way home and took plenty of his foot off with it,” Milne said. “He has taken a bit of time for the foot to grow back and now it is fully healed. He was racing pretty much on his sole for a couple of starts but he is right now.”

The son of Shamardal will be out to become the first horse to win the Epsom Handicap and Doncaster Mile double in the same season since champion galloper Super Impose achieved the feat in 1990 and 1991.

Captain Sonador rises 1.5kg from his Epsom Handicap-winning weight of 52kg for Saturday’s assignment. Milne said the four-year-old is in well with the weight. “I reckon he has come up all right in that field with 53.5kg,” Milne said. “He is getting weight off More Joyous and he is only 2kg over the limit. He is in well.”

Luke Nolen will have his first ride on Captain Sonador in the Doncaster Mile and Milne is happy with the stallion’s draw for Saturday’s $2 million race.

“He’s a big striding horse so he is well-drawn out in nine,” Milne said. “He is such an easy horse to ride, you can put him almost anywhere and he will travel kindly so the gate is perfect.”

Raheen Stud will stand Captain Sonador for the 2011 breeding season and will announce his service fee after the autumn carnival. Broodmare owners can call studmaster Basil Nolan (07) 4666 1172 for further information about shares or nominations.