Trainer David Eustace hopes Heart Of Puissance can make up for lost time after 10 months out with degenerative gum disease

Co-trainer David Eustace is mindful about placing a ceiling on Heart Of Puissance ahead of the untapped galloper’s return from quite a unique affliction, degenerative gum disease.

The flashy entire, robbed of the back end of a potentially lucrative three-year-old campaign, resumes on Saturday at Sandown Hillside after 10 months off the scene.

“It took an awful lot of investigating,” Eustace said.

“We have now been able to get to the bottom of it.

“He’s been in work a while and had a number of jump outs, so he seems in good order.”

An ongoing sinus infection last year was the catalyst for the successful deep dive into Heart Of Puissance’s health and ultimate recovery.

“He had something very unusual wrong, degenerative gums, which has taken a while to get right,” Eustace said.

“We investigated through a number of different things (after sinus problems) and in the end he went to a tooth specialist.

“It was very involved, went to Werribee hospital for scans on his head et cetera and we got there.”

Heart Of Puissance had one tooth removed, a difficult procedure under heavy sedation, and a plug inserted to fill the void.

“Full credit to the owners, we always felt we had a nice horse on our hands, it’s great they have stuck with him and we’re able to get him back to the track and hopefully win some races,” Eustace said.

The light-raced maiden and benchmark 64 winner, who drew a rejected offer of $1.6m in 2019 after placing third in the Group 2 Sandown Guineas, holds an entry for the Australian Cup in March.

Despite the long lay-off, Heart Of Puissance has firmed $3.20 to $2.80 at TAB to win Race 8 on Saturday.

“He obviously showed us plenty early,” Eustace said.

“Whether he’s going to quite reach that level (time will tell).

“There’s now very little pressure on the horse, it’s taken a while to get him back … now we can focus on hopefully getting him through the grades.

“He’s got a beautiful rating (72) and hopefully we can work on that and get his mark up.”

Eustace rated hard-to-catch stayer Bartholomeu Dias a winning chance Saturday on his best form.

“He can win a race like that,” Eustace said.

“He has been a fraction disappointing but he can win a race like that.”

Bartholomeu Dias meets Mosh Music and Hobart Cup contender Double You Tee in a competitive 2400m handicap.

Originally published asSandown Heart starter flashy horse with dodgy gums

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