AFTER five trials in the past nine months, Painted Purple is set to make his racing debut at Bathurst on Monday.
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The four-year-old gelding out of Bathurst trainer Wanda Ings' stable first trailed at Wellington back in September last year and he's slowly improved over the course of his next four trials.
Ings said she's thrilled to finally have the gelding make his racing debut.
"He's a lovely horse, a really big stunning horse," she said.
"He's taken time, just one of those horses. Like Melbourne Cup horses - not saying he'll be one of them - but they don't hit their strides until their four.
"He's not a real sharp horse. We've given him a heap of trials to try and get him fit. We've played the game with him and he's starting to learn.
"He's a four-year-old and he's taken a long time to learn but he's a real staying horse. I've never been too concerned about taking time with him.
"He probably won't show his best until he gets to the 2000 metres plus distance."
Ings' daughter Chelsea will be the saddle for Painted Purple's debut, which will come in the opening race of Monday's meeting.
"I hope he's going to tackle towards the end, doing his best work at the end," Ings said.
"He's not showing any speed in any of his early trials. He almost got brought down in his first trial and it took as ages to get his confidence back.
"He's one of those big, soft teddy bear horses and it took us about eight months to get him back on track."
Racing is set to get underway on Monday at 12.55pm.
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