Farewell for Kreisler?s Jewel
By GREG WHITE
THERE'LL be a tear in trainer Brett Dodson's eye when grand campaigner Kreisler's Jewel steps out for his final race start in today's Akubra Hats Kempsey Cup.
Horse and trainer go back a long way to when a wooly-coated barrier rogue arrived from New Zealand and the critics told Dodson he was wasting his time.
"How wrong were they?" Dodson said while preparing the horse for his last hurrah.
"He put me on the map in this business and we became great mates."
Dodson prepared Kreisler's Jewel to win two Tamworth Cups and had originally chosen that race on Sunday for a finale.
"He struck himself in trackwork and the bruising put an end to those plans, so we made him a late entry for Kempsey," he said.
"He's very sound in the legs but I didn't want him going on forever and have the handicappers crush him with weight."
The trainer nominates victory in the listed Recognition Stakes in Brisbane as his mate's best win but as usual, a story emerges of the one that got away.
"The start before, Zac Purton rode him in the Bernborough Handicap and came back telling us he should have killed them.
"He gets back in his races and towards the end was climbing all over the leaders.
"Zac reckoned he should have won by a mile."
Win, lose or dead heat in Kempsey today, the curtain comes down for good.
"The owners and I want a good home for him where he'll be looked after for the rest of his days," Dodson said.
"Maybe someone who'd like to show him would be good.
"He's a kind old bloke who's earned his retirement and I'll miss him like crazy."
Kreisler's Jewel's will jump out for the last time at 4.05pm with Nigel Seymour his rider.