Australia Champ Makes 3-year-old Debut

By Ric Chapman

Dance Hero (Danzero -- Gypsy Dancer), the wonder juvenile of last season, fresh from his Australian champion 2-year-old award Aug. 4 and Aug. 5 champion New South Wales title, steps out Saturday for his first racing assignment as a 3-year-old.

He will contest the group II San Domenico Stakes over five furlongs at Royal Randwick and already in early betting is at prohibitive odds. Dance Hero already has created a cult, Smarty Jones-type following after ploughing through the top order of Australian juvenile races earlier this year.

He won more money as a 2-year-old than any horse in history (AUD$3.1 million; U.S. $2,191,414), and also became the only juvenile to win the $3 million group I Golden Slipper and $1 million Magic Millions Classic and finally joined a list of just four other juveniles who have eclipsed the 2-year-old Triple Crown: Golden Slipper Stakes, six furlongs; AJC Sires' Produce Stakes, seven furlongs and AJC Champagne Stakes over a mile.

What made that feat even harder was that those three group I races of the Triple Crown were this time around run over a period of just 14 days. All of Australia awaits with tremendous interest his return in the AUD$150,000 San Domenico Stakes. His arch rival, Charge Forward, who chased him home in second spot in the Golden Slipper and remains the only horse ever to have beaten Dance Hero (on debut in the Breeders Plate) will line up with three others to take on the champ.