Hot Danish to serve it up in Melbourne

Outstanding mare Hot Danish could campaign exclusively in Melbourne this spring with the Group One Myer Classic her major target.

The winner of 10 of her 17 starts, Hot Danish is back in work at trainer Les Bridge’s Randwick stable and will run in a barrier trial next month before Bridge decides if she will resume in Sydney or go straight to Melbourne.
“I’ll give her a trial but I haven’t made up my mind yet if I’ll give her a run here or go straight to Melbourne,” Bridge said.
“She will go to Melbourne, it’s just whether she has a run here first.
“I’d like to run her in some of those (Melbourne) sprints on the way to the Myer Classic.”
If Hot Danish does return in Sydney it will most likely be in the Group Two The Shorts (1100m) at Randwick on October 3, the same race she finished second in to Fritz’s Princess last year.
However, Bridge also believes a race like the Group One Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley a week earlier would suit his mare.
“We’ll see how she trials and decide after that,” he said.
Hot Danish has not raced since her game fourth to Danleigh in the All-Aged Stakes at Randwick in April.
While she is a three-time winner at Group Two level she is yet to claim a major with her five attempts at Group One company all thwarted by wet tracks which dull her electrifying finishing burst.
“She’s had five runs in Group Ones and they’ve nearly all been on heavy nine tracks,” Bridge said.
“I’d love to see her on a dry track in a big race but what can you do?”
A rising six-year-old, Hot Danish’s career has been meticulously managed by Bridge and she is less than $6,000 shy of the $1 million prizemoney mark.
Her great winning strike rate has ensured she is a favourite among punters and Bridge says the signs point to her upcoming campaign being her best yet.
“She had about six or seven weeks in the paddock so she’s had a good spell,” he said.
“She looks terrific, probably better than she ever has.”
While Hot Danish’s immediate future is on the racetrack, stablemate and 2006 Villiers Stakes winner Utzon has run his last race.
Bridge confirmed Utzon had been retired and could be headed for a new career as a police horse.

By Mandy Cottell