One box Dwayne Dunn would like to tick sooner rather than later is beside Chautauqua’s name as the winning jockey in a Group One race.
Dunn has three Group One seconds on Chautauqua, all over the straight course at Flemington where the pair return on Saturday for the Lightning Stakes.
While Dunn is yet to salute aboard Chautauqua at the highest level, the sprinter is a dual Group One winner with Tommy Berry aboard and is Australia’s highest ranked horse in the international ratings.
Dunn does boast five victories on the son of Encosta De Lago including his only 1000m-win which came at Moonee Valley and not down the straight track where he runs in the Lightning.
“It’s a chink in the armour and there’s no reason for it,” Dunn said.
“I’ve won enough races on him. It just hasn’t been in a big Group One.”
Chautauqua hasn’t raced since finishing second to Delectation in the Darley Classic at Flemington on the final day of the Melbourne Cup carnival.
It was his second defeat in the race after Terravista lowered his colours 12 months earlier.
Both are opposed to Chautauqua on Saturday in a race Dunn said would be a tactical contest.
“Small fields always makes it tactical so it won’t be a walk in the park,” he said.
“Terravista’s probably beaten us home more than we’ve beaten him home and Delectation has just beaten Chautauqua down the straight.
“Exosphere has a big push for a young horse so the quality of the field cannot be underestimated.”
Chautauqua jumps from barrier two with Godolphin colt and co-favourite Exosphere inside him.
Dunn rode Chautauqua in an 800m jump-out at Flemington last week against Lightning opponents Delectation and Japonisme, both trained by Chris Waller.
“It was about going through the motions,” Dunn said.
“He needed it but he was impressive with what he did and pulled up pretty well after it.
“Fitness-wise, I’m sure they’ve done a lot of foundation work but I’ve only seen him for that one jump-out.
“It’s hard to say that he’s come back better but he looks terrific and has done nothing wrong.”