In-form Tasmanian gelding Hellova Street has crossed Bass Strait again to attempt to cap his preparation with another stakes win in the Group Three Victoria Handicap at Caulfield.
The Scott Brunton-trained six-year-old won the Listed March Stakes (1400m) at Flemington last month which made it three-straight wins after weight-for-age Listed victories in his home state at his previous two runs.
Hellova Street was taken home after his Flemington success and arrived back in Melbourne on Thursday morning in preparation for his stiffest test this campaign in Saturday’s 1400m Victoria Handicap, which will be the first time he has competed in a Group race.
“The win at Flemington was fantastic,” Brunton said.
“It was exciting for myself, my family and all the connections. It was a terrific effort and well-deserved by the horse.
“We pulled the right rein by leaving the (Group Two) Blamey Stakes alone on the same day and going to that race.”
“This will be his last run for the campaign,” Brunton said.
“He’s had eight starts this preparation for four wins and three seconds. He’s done an outstanding job and he seemed to have pulled up really well, so we thought we’ll dip our toe in the water one more time and see how we go.”
While Hellova Street rises in class from his last start win, he also drops in weight and has drawn well in barrier four.
Brunton anticipates a tactical battle early with speed horses Charmed Harmony, Hooked and Rocket Commander drawn inside Hellova Street.
“It would be nice if we could sit outside the leader or lead again. That would be great and that would be our plan,” Brunton said.
“We know he’s fit and think he’s healthy and well and expect him to run a really good race in what’s a really good test for him.”
Brunton said it would be outstanding if Hellova Street could make it four-straight wins and cap his preparation.
“For us blokes from Tassie there’s not many better things than going to the big stage in Melbourne and winning a good race,” Brunton said.
“It’s a great feeling and you never want to stop having it.”