Connections of Ayrton are mounting their case for a spot in the $4 million All-Star Mile after his luckless third in last Saturday’s Group 2 Blamey Stakes.

The Blamey was a ‘win-and-you’re-in’ contest for the All-Star Mile at Caulfield on March 16 and Ayrton spent most of the straight climbing over heels before finding his way into the forgive file of many when beaten by less than a length.

A six-time winner at the Caulfield track, Ayrton beat home last week’s wildcard recipient Munhamek in the Futurity Stakes.

“Barrier one is a blessing or a curse, it allowed him to get a really good run in the race but you can’t climb over the top of them,” Roll the Dice Racing’s Steve Travaglia said.

“Jamie (Kah) said the horse should have won but she thinks he’s going as good as ever.

“You’d love to think Matt Welsh might be picking up the phone to Mick (Price).”

While renowned for his elite 1400-metre form, Saturday’s luckless run was just his second at 1600m, having won at G3 level as a three-year-old at his only other attempt.

“I think some people might question does he run a mile but one of his peak performances was in the Gunsynd Classic and he beat Elsberg, who is a subsequent Group 1 winner,” Travaglia said.

“Talking to Mick and he was saying these horses as they get a bit older, the 1400-metre horses turn into milers deeper into a prep to get them to find their comfort zone.

“He hasn’t drawn well the last few starts and has had to either do work or had no luck.

“But when he draws well and gets the right run, he’s always there poking his head through.

“Outside of Mr Brightside it’s pretty open.”

Pitching for an All-Star Mile slot is a far cry from where Ayrton found himself two-and-a-half years ago, fighting for life after a suspected spider bite when at the peak of his powers.

Ayrton lost 60 kilograms in two weeks following the incident.

“The Cinderella story I guess is he was going to be anything and then he got the spider bite and to get him back winning and competitive in Group 2s and 1s, it would be a great story if he could give them a shake in the All-Star Mile,” said Travaglia.

“Some people don’t realise how close to death he was.

“Credit to the boys and Shona (Drechsler), the horse was at Mick and Shona’s place for a long time in the paddock next to their bedroom door basically to make sure he was going to live.

“As an ownership group initially we wondered when he come back if he wasn’t going to be the same horse and you couldn’t blame him if he wasn’t and the first prep he didn’t come up but he’s kept picking up.”

Travaglia said Ayrton will run in the Listed Anniversary Vase (1600m) on the same program on March 16 if he isn’t able to secure an All-Star Mile berth.


Pin It on Pinterest