Winks excited for Bondeiger to be back

Jockey James Winks is looking forward to renewing his association with exciting four-year-old Bondeiger when he resumes from injury at Caulfield on Saturday.

The Danny O’Brien-trained son of War Pass, who hasn’t raced since finishing a narrow second behind Preferment in the Victoria Derby in November, missed the entire autumn after suffering a pre-stress fracture to a pastern in February.

Having ridden the gelding in all six of his starts as well as his recent gallops and jumpouts, Winks said the horse was in great order ahead of Saturday’s $120,000 Regal Roller Stakes (1200m).

“He’s a very good horse and you can’t take his ability away from him but my only concern ahead of Saturday’s race is how long that he’s had off,” Winks said.

“Fitness-wise you just can’t beat race fitness and that would be the only knock that I’ve got on him but otherwise he’s ticked every box at home and I’m looking forward to getting him back to the races.”

With Bondeiger holding nominations for both the BMW Caulfield Cup and William Hill Cox Plate, Winks said he didn’t believe those races were simply pipedreams for the colt, who he expects will be hitting the line hard first up on Saturday.

“He’s still got to prove that he’s up to those races but I believe he is, he’s got great ability and he’s a horse that I’m really looking forward to riding during the spring,” he said.

“He’s a competitive horse and is always really sharp in whatever he does.

“He’s always run well fresh no matter what the distance is and obviously if he steams home and wins then that would be lovely but I’m just looking for him to run a nice race and then I’d be stoked.”

Winks will also ride Bondeiger’s stable mate Ragazzo Del Corsa in Saturday’s $150,000 Vain Stakes (1100m) and said it appeared a nice race for the three-year-old.

“He’s come back well and it’s not the strongest edition of the Vain Stakes,” he said.

“He's a horse with good ability so he should run well.”

Story be Ben Asgari, to view full story click here

Photo by Slickpix, to view website click here

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