Our Bottino has a winning record on the Pakenham synthetic track and gets his first chance to add a victory at the venue’s turf course in the David Bourke Memorial Handicap.
The Warrnambool-trained gelding has been to Pakenham four times to race on the synthetic track, including three-straight wins in his most recent trips there during the winter of 2016 in benchmark races.
Saturday’s Pakenham Cup meeting is on the turf course, with the $100,000 David Bourke Memorial Handicap (1600m) an open handicap on the undercard.
“He certainly doesn’t mind going to the place, so I hope he likes the grass as much as the synthetic,” trainer Matthew Williams said.
“I think the grass certainly doesn’t pose any issues for him but obviously he’s up in grade a bit now.”
The front-running gelding has won two of his four starts this preparation including an all-the-way win in the Horsham Cup (1800m) on a firm track early last month.
Williams said the gelding did well to win because they ran along at a strong tempo.
“To be honest I didn’t think he would be able to keep going, so he did a good job,” he said.
“He likes things to go his way. Hopefully they don’t run it as strongly on Saturday and he can get a bit softer lead.”
After Horsham, Williams planned to run Our Bottino is the Listed Kilmore Cup on November 26 but the meeting was called off after the first race because of wet weather.
The six-year-old was then entered for last Thursday’s Port Fairy Cup but the Warrnambool meeting was also called off after three races because of rain.
“We had to give him a pretty strong gallop the next morning on the course proper and try to make up for it,” Williams said.
“He seems fine and he’s had enough racing that I don’t think it would matter that much. But you never want to be missing races.
“You’ve just got to adjust the training to suit and hope you get it right.”