Brilliant Flemington win for Durendal

Dec 12, 2015

A profitable spring campaign stretched into the summer months when Durendal posted a strong win in Saturday’s Western Health Foundation Handicap (1200m) at Flemington.

Durendal scored at Pakenham in October and Ballarat in November before proving too strong in the lead-up to Christmas at Flemington.

Trainers Mathew Ellerton and Simon Zahra dropped Durendal from 1400m to 1200m for his latest outing but the four-year-old raced his way into the Group III Standish Handicap (1200m) with a dominant win.

Durendal raced behind the speed for jockey Damian Lane at his first try down the Flemington straight track before justifying the faith of those that backed him from $3.70 to $3 with a one-length win over Sarajevo ($10) and Zupacharged ($31).

“He’s graduated from Benchmark class and he’s probably earned a shot at the Standish,” Ellerton said.

“His form at 1200 is impeccable. The calendar dictated that we went to 1400.

“He had a good freshen from Ballarat into today and with the limit weight, he looked well in.

“It was either the Standish or Christmas Handicap because his 1200m form at Caulfield is fantastic but we’ll probably come back here New Year’s Day with him.”

Durendal’s win continued Ellerton and Zahra’s outstanding run, which included doubles at Sandown last Saturday and Wednesday.

The duo has sent out 38 runners in December for 11 wins, with six of those coming in the metropolitan area.

Lane’s win on Durendal was his fourth city success in 24 hours after he booted home a treble at Moonee Valley on Friday night.