TERANG-born Dan O’Sullivan gets his chance to fulfil a childhood dream when he saddles up Gottino in the $50,000 Terang Cup tomorrow.
O’Sullivan, 51, who has 25 horses in work at his Ballarat stables told The Standard he had fond memories of attending Terang Cup days as a child with his parents and always wanted to win the Terang Cup as a trainer.
“My first memories of going to the races was at Terang. They used to run the Terang Cup on New Year’s Day,” O’Sullivan said.
“It used to be a big day for the people of Terang and district. I can vividly remember the good galloper King Of Kings winning at Terang for the legendary trainer Fred Drever with Neville “Nifty” Wilson riding him.
“I’ve been fortunate to have won a few races during my training career including an Adelaide Cup, but to win a Terang Cup would be extra special. My dad Brian was a committeeman there for a few years. He’ll be here again tomorrow watching how my runners perform.”
Gottino switched to O’Sullivan’s stables last October after veteran Ballarat trainer Ken Moore suffered a hand injury.
“I’ve had a hard act to follow in Ken. He won eight country cups with Gottino. I had a bit of luck with the horse in Melbourne in January. Gottino ran a really good race in the Mornington Cup two starts back but failed at Flemington last time when the track was hard,” he said.
“I’m anticipating there will be a bit of give in the track at Terang which will really suit Gottino. He’s got a very good record on slow tracks. I would say on paper it looks like being a very strong Terang Cup.”
Imported galloper Haylaman for Warrnambool trainer Aaron Purcell is pre-post favourite in the 2150-metre race.
The Terang Cup is scheduled to start at 3.59pm.