Mark Newnham takes cautious approach with Diamond Thunder

On this day 12 months ago classy sprinter Diamond Thunder announced himself as a Magic Millions contender but a tendon injury has trainer Mark Newnham taking a more cautious approach this time around.

Newnham’s impressive son of Dawn Approach was one of the stars of Wyong’s Magic Millions day when he edged out the talented Hightail to win the $100,000 3YO & 4Yo Stakes (1200m) last December.

He went on to finish seventh in the $2 million Magic Millions 3YO Guineas two starts later but hasn’t been sighted since.

Mark Newnham has a stable in hot form. Photo: Mark Evans/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images

That was until Tuesday morning at Canterbury trials when Diamond Thunder blew out the cobwebs, running 2-1/2 lengths second in a 895m heat.

“He trialled well coming back from that tendon injury,” Newnham said.

“He hasn’t raced since that Magic Millions race last year and we don’t want to rush him into anything.

“I will see how we get through his next trial first but the only suitable race from him to go back to the Gold Coast would be the Magic Millions Sprint over 1200m.

“But he would have to go there (Queensland) first up so we will have to see if he is fit enough.”

Quackerjack (red/yellow) is being targeted at the Magic Millions. Photo: Mark Evans/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images

While the likelihood of Diamond Thunder running on the Gold Coast remains up in the air, stablemate Quackerjack is destined to end up on the glitter strip.

The 2019 Villiers Stakes winner also trialled this week and produced a typically determined performance on speed to edge out Viridine over 895m, clocking 54.46 (last 600m in 34.17).

“He was good and looks to be his usual self,” Newnham said.

“The Christmas Classic will be his first up assignment then we will go to the Magic Millions Cup after that.”

Magic Millions Day takes centre stage on the Gold Coast on Saturday, January 16.

Last year's Villiers winner Quackerjack, with @JoshuaParr8 in the saddle, leads all the way to win a Canterbury trial on Tuesday from Viridine and Rabbit Clause. @tabcomau @mark_mnracing

Originally published asClassy sprinter on long road back

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