Erector is loving life back in Australia.
At Sandown on Wednesday the Robert Smerdon-trained gelding will be racing for a third win in a row.
Erector was sold to Hong Kong as an unraced three-year-old but didn’t settle into the environment and was eventually returned to Australia.
The now five-year-old made his belated debut at Pakenham in October and will be having his fifth start when he runs in the Thebigscreencompany.com.au Handicap.
Erector scored his maiden win over Wednesday’s course and distance of 1800m before dropping back slightly in distance to score at Geelong earlier this month.
“He was sold to Hong Kong off the back of a couple of good trials,” Smerdon said.
“He beat Renew in a trial at Cranbourne and went up there unraced.
“It can be a fairly harsh environment and temperament-wise he struggled and gave them a hard time.
“They said ‘this horse isn’t going to adapt to the environment’ so he was sent home.”
Smerdon says Erector has vindicated the decision to send him to Hong Kong with his past two wins and he believes the gelding can win more races.
But on Wednesday he’s taking another step up in grade while also giving away experience to his opponents.
“He’s still learning but each run has been better than the one before,” Smerdon said.
“These types of horses, they progress with experience but I also think he’ll get better off a break.”
Smerdon said it was not an easy task for horses to go from winning a maiden race and then stepping up in grade to win at their next start.
And Erector now has to take another leap.
“To his credit he’s gone on after winning his maiden but on Wednesday he takes another big step,” Smerdon said.
“While I think he might have that level of ability, he still has to go out and do it.
“Whether he can take that step now or whether it will take longer, I don’t know, but in his favour is that he’s won at the track and distance.”
Tom Sadler, who has teamed with Erector since his return, again takes the ride on Wednesday.
“There’s no use changing a winning combination,” Smerdon said.