Team Dailly will be chasing a Group 1 double in Sydney on Saturday night when the National Derby and National Futurity Finals are held at Wentworth Park.
The Daillys are taking aim at back-to-back victories in the Derby with Diego Bale, with superstar Fernando Bale having launched his magnificent career when winning the event in 2015.
After running third in a heat of the Paws Of Thunder at his first appearance at Wentworth Park, Fernando Bale incredibly won his next 10 starts at the track, with the Derby the first of the recently retired champion’s four Group 1 triumphs at the venue.
Likewise, Diego Bale failed to fire at his Wentworth Park debut when finishing sixth in a Paws Of Thunder heat before winning his Derby qualifier in brilliant fashion, trouncing Paws Of Thunder hero Asa Flying Spur by 10 lengths in a fast 29.83.
But while Diego Bale has followed the same path to the Derby as Fernando Bale did 12 months ago, co-trainer George Dailly says that’s where the comparisons start and finish.
“Diego Bale can run but he ain’t no Fernando Bale!” Dailly said.
“It’ll be a very long time before we’re talking about another Fernando Bale,” he said.
“If Diego Bale gets a clear run he can run a bit of time, but he needs everything to go his way. He showed what he can do in his Derby heat but he got a clear run from out in box eight and drawing near the inside in box three this week could bring him undone.”
“If Diego Bale was 100 per cent sound he could’ve been a very good dog but the whole litter have bone problems. Diego Bale has a bone issue in front and if you watch him run very closely he has a very strange galloping action.”
The Dailly kennel has the favourite for the National Futurity in lightly-raced youngster Dyna Maddie, which was the subject of an old-fashioned betting plunge when winning her heat in 29.70, the only sub-30 qualifying performance.
“Dyna Maddie is a very nice bitch,” Dailly said.
“They backed her off the boards last week and it wasn’t a surprise she went so well because she has a heap of ability. When she won her maiden at Ballarat she broke 25 seconds.”
“She’s very small and she hasn’t got a great deal of early toe either but she’s very strong and if she gets a clear run in the final she’ll be hard to beat. I’d say she’d be the better of our two chances on Saturday night.”
Diego Bale is the only Victorian contesting the Derby, but there’s a strong representation in the Futurity with Dyna Maddie joined by Brett Bravo’s My Girl Chloe, Steve Collins’ Lyka Allen and Jeff Britton’s Mepunga Rosie.