REIGNING New Zealand and Australian Trotting Mare of the Year, Sunny Ruby, will be served by top French trotting sire Love You if she fails to shake off a tendon injury this month.
The brilliantly fast daughter of Sundon was nominated, and the first payment made, for next week’s Group One Dominion at Addington, however, those plans were shelved when a scan revealed the injury had flared again.
Weedons horseman Fred Fletcher, who co-owns Sunny Ruby with son-in-law Sam Smolenski, said the injury occurred in April.
“She had done a great job in Aussie with Anthony Butt and Sonya Smith, who looked after her there, winning three Group One races in Melbourne,” Fletcher said.
To connections’ dismay, Sunny Ruby pulled up lame after the ANZAC Cup, a free-for-all lead up to the Rowe Cup, at Auckland.
“We brought her home and worked on her,” Fletcher said. “She scanned better and we walked her for a month and she was ready to do a bit more when one of scans was not really that good.”
Sunny Ruby has been trained at various times by each of her owners, and after being back with Fletcher until recently, has returned to Smolenski’s new property and “starting to do a bit more now.”
The owners are keeping their fingers crossed, but realistically, Fletcher says she will have to be given the all-clear with her tendon by the end of November otherwise the stud option will be exercised.
“She’ll be a valuable broodmare with her wins under her belt and has won us a lot of money ($362,020, 19 wins from 64 starts) but we’d still like to get her back, if we can, as she’s only half-way through her race career,” Fletcher said. “She has so much ability.”