Rejuvenated galloper Metal Bender joined a galaxy of Group 1 winners with a heart-warming victory in the George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill on Saturday.
Metal Bender (6g Danasinga – Jacqwin by Bluebird) took all the short-cuts along the rails to run down Rekindled Interest and Secret Admirer in a blanket finish to the weight-for-age feature. “It’s just an amazing performance,” trainer Chris Waller said. “It’s a big effort for a horse who has been off the scene for such a long time.”
Purchased by the late Jack Denham for $160,000 at the 2007 Inglis Easter yearling sale, Metal Bender has well and truly repaid owner David Fuller with over $1.89 million in prizemoney.
The son of Danasinga won the G1 Randwick and Rosehill Guineas as three-year-old under Denham’s care, before Waller prepared him to more G1 glory in the 2010 Doomben Cup. Since then a spate of career threatening injuries has punctuated his career and he also incurred a mandatory three-month ban after bleeding in the 2010 Mackinnon Stakes.
He was racing second-up on Golden Slipper day after an impressive third behind More Joyous in the G2 Canterbury Stakes last month. The George Ryder Stakes honour-roll includes Manikato, Emancipation, Lonhro, Haradasun, Weekend Hussler and Racing To Win.
Waikato Stud bred Metal Bender and sold him from their 2007 Easter Sale draft. The leading NZ nursery has 6 yearlings catalogued for this week’s Inglis Easter Sale.
His sire Danasinga began stud duties at Waikato before transferring to Baerami Thoroughbreds in NSW. He moved to Touchstone Farm in Western Australia for a one-off season in 2010 before returning to the Hunter Valley last year.
Danasinga (Danehill) has sired four Group 1 winners – the last of the quartet was Mirjulisa Lass who claimed the Vinery Stud Stakes on the 2011 Golden Slipper card.