Sir Mako has made a remarkable recovery from knee surgery and a tendon injury that threatened to derail his career in New Zealand.
Now with Chris Waller at Rosehill, his comeback continued with a determined victory in the Courtenay House Hcp (2000m) at Randwick on Saturday.
“He is a typical tough, Kiwi stayer and has a great temperament,” stable foreman Peter Muscutt said. “I’m not sure whether Chris will keep him going or back off and get ready for the spring.”
Sir Mako (7g Ustinov – Knauss by Last Tycoon) had won three of his first four starts at Wanganui, Foxton and Tauranga for owner-trainer Dan O’Leary before going amiss as a four year-old in June 2012.
Resuming late last year, he regained form running second in the G3 Hawke’s Bay Gold Cup in April for O’Leary and his wife Jane before crossing the Tasman.
“We’ve got a lot of paddocks at Marton and giving him time was never a concern,” O’Leary said. “He’s a capable horse and deserved a chance in Sydney.”
Moorookyle Park sire Ustinov got him from a three-quarter sister to outstanding galloper Mahogany. Ustinov is based north of Ballarat and stands for a $4,400 (inc gst) service fee.