Gary Portelli is one trainer who thinks there is value in taking on Black Caviar.
Portelli is planning to run former NSW bush mare Platinum Skye against Black Caviar in the champion sprinter’s comeback race at Caulfield on Saturday.
Black Caviar is set to resume in the Schillaci Stakes and Platinum Skye, along with stablemate Eight Bills, is one of eight nominations for the $200,000 scamper.
Portelli says there is a method to what might be perceived as obvious madness in lining up a mare yet to be placed in a black-type race against one of the world’s best.
“She’ll be running for sure,” Portelli said. “My thinking is that Black Caviar will scare off half the field and if Platinum Skye can run second or third it gives her a Group Two placing for her as a broodmare.”
Leading Sydney jockey Nash Rawiller has been confirmed to ride the six-year-old for the first time.
“The owners are planning on going to Melbourne for the day and they are really looking forward to it for the simple fact they will have a horse racing against Black Caviar,” Portelli said.
Portelli said Platinum Skye had been sent to Melbourne straight after she set a sizzling tempo before fading late to finish fifth in the Sheraco Stakes at Rosehill.
“She’s been in Melbourne for a while now and there’s been no dramas with her that way of going,” he said.
Portelli and his wife Kelly welcomed a baby boy, Harper, into their lives last week but the Warwick Farm trainer remains busy sizing up his spring carnival options.
Eagle Command, second in an 1800m Listed race at Flemington on Sunday, has emerged as a spring spearhead for the stable.
So much so, there is every chance the three-year-old will go into the Victoria Derby on October 29 without another run.
“My brother Troy looks after him at Flemington but we are contemplating doing that because he is a really good-winded horse,” Portelli said.
“Besides, I don’t think a track like Caulfield will suit him so that rules out one possible lead-up run.”