Tommy Berry’s readiness to ride Our Bellagio Miss at a light weight has fuelled her trainer’s belief that can she run a race when she resumes in the $300,000 The Warra at Kembla Grange.
While the mare’s 53.5kg isn’t an undue stretch for the top jockey, Berry’s rides under 54kg are generally limited.
But after partnering Our Bellagio Miss to a recent barrier trial win, he has been keen to stick with her for Saturday’s first-up assignment.
“She trialled super the other day and Tommy is happy to ride her at 53-1/2 kilos, which he doesn’t have to do,” trainer Greg Hickman said.
“He obviously thought she trialled nicely and if we do get rain, that puts her right into the money.
“Her work has been super. Maybe she could have drawn a better gate (than 10) but in saying that, she likes being out of the road a bit.
“I’ve tried my hardest to have her right for this race because they don’t have a lot of 1000 metre races in NSW at the moment.”
Our Bellagio Miss excels on rain-affected tracks with her six wins all posted on soft or heavy ground.
Kembla was a soft 6 on Thursday and showers are forecast over the coming days.
Hickman will also saddle up Eleven Eleven in the same race and while he is better credentialled over further than 1000m, the $2 million plus earner has the class to feature if the frontrunners overdo it.
The winner of the Magic Millions Cup in January and promoted to first in the 2020 Magic Millions Guineas following the disqualification of Alligator Blood, Eleven Eleven is again being primed for a Gold Coast assault in January.
However, Hickman can make cases for both his horses on Saturday if they get conditions to suit.
“Eleven Eleven, it’s probably going to be too short for, but if there is a lickety-split pace, that will help,” Hickman said.
“With her, if the rain comes – which it’s supposed to – she is a good chance to run well.
“It just comes down to what happens on the day and how the race is run.”
The market has Eleven Eleven at $7.50 and Our Bellagio Miss at $21.