2020 was summed up with a fair amount of sick horses and a total of three wins for Jonathan Gustavsson.
The way 2021 has started is the exact opposite - two wins in three starts for the stable and in the week ahead last year's total win number could be both equalled and surpassed.
"I think it looks very good on paper for B.G. Pastor Jonte on Wednesday, but I've learned that you have to stay humble in this sport" says the 23 year old trainer.
Jonathan Gustavsson was anything but pleased when 2020 was summed up. The win percent was 5 and the earnings stopped at SEK 361,100 which was a miscalculation and a huge step back compared to previous years.
"We just have to put last year behind us. Something got the horses sick early in the summer and after that they weren't themselves".
"Fortunately this year has started incredibly well, but it might be hard to keep the win percent at 67 all year" he says jokingly.
"Earplugs still in"
On Wednesday B.G. Pastor Jonte will most likely be the favorite on V86® and on paper it couldn't look better.
"We drew a perfect post position behind the gate and the form seems to be just as good as it was when he rounded the field first time barefoot at Färjestad back in May".
"In training he feels just as good as he did before his last start and his form should be even better after that start" says Jonathan.
In his last start Jonte made it two in a row in a race that was much tougher than the one he won two starts ago in Eskilstuna.
“I had a lot of respect for the fact that he was up in class a lot compared to the start before, but he handled that without any problems. It was a very good drive by Robert and Jonte still had the plugs in at the finish line and he was far from tired".
"Bergh never really asked him to go and maybe the others weren't all that good but he still trotted 1:12 in the snowstorm and there are no signs of him not being just as good on Wednesday" says Jonathan.
"Looks very good on paper"
The fact that he had so much left in the tank in his last win makes the undersigned wonder if the drive might be more aggressive this time at Solvalla when Magnus Djuse - who drove B.G. Pastor Jonte at his first career win - takes care of the driving duties.
"I would like to see him in the lead this time. He has only raced there once and he was good that time which was the first start back after a break".
"He doesn't need any certain trip though and he can do more work than he needed to in his last start. I think he would have won even if Robert hadn't sat with him when they attacked three wide down the back side".
"That's a good feeling to have going into the Wedensday start and I actually think it looks very good on paper. The toughest opponent seems to be Mister Donald but he hasn't raced in a while and maybe Armstrong Louis could be a threat if he’s better this time".
"He's a justified favorite and I think he’s got a good chance to win" says trainer Gustavsson.
"New in class I"
With two recent wins it's possible to set the aim a little higher for future starts, but Jonathan is careful when it comes to that.
"Should Jonte race well again on Wednesday we might very well consider V75 with him, but he is new in class I and there's good money to race for on Wednesdays too. In class I he will have to race against horses who has earned up to SEK 500,000. We will have time to race on V75 if we want to, so there's no rush there" says the trainer.
Besides B.G. Pastor Jonte, Jonathan also has B.G. Arne racing on Monday this week. Both horses need to win if he wants to keep his win percent of 67 up and the form sure seems to be there for that to happen.