The Master Of Design galloper, Delta D’Or has now won four straight, and there doesn’t look like any sign of stopping for the heat loving three-year-old.
Trained and owned by Patrick Johnston in Darwin, Delta D’Or has had three wins at his home track at Fannie Bay before heading down to Alice Springs and taking out the 1400m XXXX Gold Cup Luncheon at Pioneer Park.
“He was running very consistently in Victoria for my sister Amy, but he kept running into some very good horses so she sent him to me. With the depth of racing in Darwin not as tough, she believed he would be very competitive.” Johnson said.
“As it’s so hot up here at the moment most trainers find it difficult to get their horses really fit but he had come off the back of his Victorian prep and was rock hard and flying. He copes with the warm weather no problems and handles the dirt / oil tracks very well.”
Not many horses have travelled as far as he has this preparation, and he just takes it all in his stride.
“He’s just a easy horse, eats well, cops work, races on or off the speed and is great to handle. Couldn’t ask for more. Amy will be over the moon for me and happy to see him going so well.”
Delta D’Or’s next assignment is the NT Guineas in Alice Springs in a fortnight before a spell for a month in the paddock in Alice Springs where it is a bit cooler this time of year. He will then aim for the Darwin Guineas and the NT Derby in July.
Pat Johnston moved to the Top End from Victoria in 2014 and he has quite a pedigree himself. His grandfather is the late Jim Houlahan, who dominated the jumps racing scene for many years and is in the racing Hall of Fame.
“My parents Fran Houlahan and Brian Johnston both train as does my sister Amy and uncle Mark Houlahan,” Johnston said.
“I came to the Top End to work in construction and the racing up here is a bonus.”
Delta D’Or was bred by the late Kevin Heffernan at Blue Gum Farm and purchased by the very good judge David Raphael at the Inglis Vobis Gold sale for $40,000. By Master of Design he is out of the Encosta De Lago mare Gold Delta.