Casey upbeat about Dynamite after smooth journey to Australia
Rich Ricci's staying stars have arrived at the international quarantine centre in the Melbourne suburb of Werribee safe and sound and David Casey was on Monday the bearer of encouraging news about 2015 Melbourne Cup runner-up Max Dynamite, revealing that he lost a lot less weight on the journey from Ireland than was the case two years ago.
Max Dynamite has struggled to regain the form that saw him get within half a length of Prince Of Penzance in the race that stops a nation, but Willie Mullins' assistant believes he is on the way back.
Casey said: "Max Dynamite and Thomas Hobson travelled over great. Max lost a lot less weight than he did two years ago so that's pretty good for him. He looks great.
"They've both put back on the weight they lost coming over and are eating and drinking. We're only just starting their programmes now and building them up but hopefully in three weeks' time they'll be going well."
He continued: "Thomas Hobson has been very consistent all year. Max is only coming back and has had a couple of niggles so it will be difficult for him.
"Thomas was very good in Ascot and ran really well at Doncaster last time, where he almost managed to give a lot of weight away to a good three-year-old. The Magic Man [Joao Moreira] is booked so maybe he might be the one, you never know."
Max Dynamite is 33-1 with bet365 to go one better than two years ago, while Thomas Hobson is 20-1 with the same firm.
The admirably versatile eight-year-old had a good blowout around Werribee racecourse, completing a couple of circuits of the track, and Casey is convinced he still loves the game despite his hectic schedule over the last couple of years.
Casey said: "Wicklow Brave's in good order and we're really happy with him. He looks super and his work has been good. We're under no illusions and we know the Caulfield Cup is going to be a very difficult race, but we're up for the challenge and hopefully he'll run very well.
"He still has a huge appetite despite all he's done. He's done it over hurdles and on the Flat, he's a Grade 1 and Group 1 winner. His last run behind Order Of St George was a really good one and I think if he can replicate that he'll run a very big race."
Marmelo also cantered around Werribee and Thomas Pirie, travelling head lad to Hughie Morrison, is chuffed at how the Deauville Group 2 winner has acclimatised to his new surroundings.
Pirie said: "Marmelo has settled in beautifully. His work has been very good and everything's gone according to plan so far. The break since his last race has done him good – he's a burly stayer."
Winx's regular rider Hugh Bowman has been booked to ride Marmelo in the Caulfield Cup.
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