Flemington return for French import

A lightly raced import with spring aspirations will begin his campaign at Flemington.

English-bred Pilote D’Essai, a three-time winner in France for Andre Fabre, runs in a 1400m-handicap on Saturday.

The Lindsay Park-trained galloper won his Australian debut at Bendigo in March, also over 1400m.

Tom Dabernig, who trains Pilot D’Essai in partnership with David and Ben Hayes, says there are no concrete plans for Pilote D’Essai.

“He’s been gelded since his win at Bendigo,” Dabernig said.

“That was always the plan but he came out to Australia in light training so we decided to press on and give him a preparation.


“He won well at Bendigo so we’ll kick him off over 1400 metres on Saturday and see where we get to.”

Dabernig says Pilote D’Essai has fully acclimatised and he is looking forward to seeing him line up on Saturday.

The gelding had a jump-out at Flemington last Friday and impressed Dabernig with how he went about his work.

“It’s hard to know what you get with these imports sometimes but he looks pretty straightforward,” Dabernig said.

“Just where he ends up it’s hard to say at this stage.

“He’ll be given every opportunity to make his way through to a good race in the spring if his form warrants it.”

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