Andado finally on side with punters

Andado (Danielle Johnson) living up to punters and connections' expectations at Matamata yesterday.

Andado (Danielle Johnson) living up to the expectations of punters and connections at Matamata yesterday.

Punters who stuck by the Cambridge four-year-old Andado were finally rewarded at Matamata yesterday with the promise of more success to come.

Andado won each of his first three trials comprehensively, one by six lengths and another by seven, and on the strength of those performances he has been backed into favouritism every time he has raced.

In his first start at Te Aroha last November he started a $2.20 favourite, but dropped out to finish second-last. Back to the trials for the fourth time, he won a Cambridge heat convincingly and punters climbed aboard again in his second start, again backing him into a $2.20 favourite.

That day at Trentham he showed improvement to finish third and punters followed him again at Te Rapa on March a fortnight ago, backing him into $3.30. Yet again he was beaten when second to Elusive Meteor over 1200 metres.

Punters loyally climbed aboard again yesterday stronger than before and Andado started a hot $1.50 favourite in the Tokoroa Club 1200, but this time he didn’t let his army of supporters down. In fact he won like an odds-on favourite should.

Ridden as usual by Danielle Johnson, he soon led, kicked clear on straightening for the run home and left his rivals struggling in his wake. At the finish he was five and a quarter lengths clear of runner-up Quintos.

“It’s nice to see,” said his relieved trainer Stephen Marsh. “In his trials he’s shown us a lot and in his races he’s got better and better. He’s still new.

“I know he won by a good margin, but he’s still on and off the rail and gawking around. Danielle made him get to the line today.

“He’s a classy galloper and this will give him confidence to carry on.”

An Australian-bred son of Red Dazzler, Andado is raced by Cambridge couple Bruce and Maureen Harvey and was bought for them by their son, Glen, at the 2014 Gold Coast Yearling Sale for A$4500.

“Bruce and Maureen have been patient and it’s always really good to win for them,” said Marsh. “They’ve supported me since I started off up here.”