Newnham still has to split his time between Warwick Farm and Randwick; he is wait-listed to move his entire business to headquarters.
While he is proud of the group 1 wins and consistency of his yard, Dolan’s development as a rider since coming from Ireland gives him joy. The problem for Newnham is he can hardly ever get his own apprentice because he has become so popular.
“We put a plan in place when he arrived to make this season his year in Sydney and it has worked,” Newnham said. “I got [Melbourne Cup-winning jockey] Wayne Harris to manage and mentor him and it has worked well because Robbie has learned and is one of the best apprentices in Sydney in recent years.
“I love seeing him winning races and I want him to be getting the best rides but it means I can’t get him a lot of the time.”
Dolan will ride Invictus Salute for Newnham at Rosehill on Saturday. The filly has had the blinkers removed after simply going too hard at Scone.
“She has a bit of talent and from the inside draw over the Rosehill 1100m, she should get the right run,” Newnham said. “Robbie should be able to lead or get a good trail and with a good weight on her back and a firm track, hopefully we can get a winner together.
“I wanted him to ride the two-year-old [Splintex] as well but I was too slow in booking him.”
Rachel King takes the ride on the Snitzel colt, which showed sustained speed to win from a wide gate on the Kensington track last time.
“He has improved again from that win but it’s a tough two-year-old race. I have Diamond Thunder and Shadow Hero in black type races in Brisbane on Saturday and this probably the best field of the three races,” Newnham said.
Shadow Hero, which was runner-up on debut at Newcastle, is equal favourite for The Phoenix and could earn himself a place in next week’s JJ Atkins.
“He is a horse I have a bit of time for and the trip away is going to do him a lot of good because I think he will measure up in the spring,” Newnham said. “He will get better as he matures but if he can win it would be worth a shot at the Atkins.”
Newnham will head to Brisbane on Saturday morning to watch Scarlet Dream have her final real gallop before the Queensland Derby.
“She is going to like the big track at Eagle Farm and is really well,” Newnham said. “We missed the Oaks because Doomben wouldn’t suit her and I think she is in the same order as she was before running second in the Australian Oaks and expect her to run well in the Derby.”
Racing writer for The Sydney Morning Herald