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Gary Portelli is keen to see if Ronstar can repeat his debut win to give him a guide to his spring prospects
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Trainer Gary Portelli is keen to see if Ronstar can repeat his debut win to give him a guide to his spring prospects.

The two-year-old beat Group Three placegetter River Bird to win at Rosehill on May 19 with the Jason Coyle-trained filly among the entries again on Saturday.

If Ronstar can win again, Portelli will assess a spring program.

“He is a perfect, big no-nonsense horse,” Portelli said.

“He has an old head on a young body so the spring is on our minds.

“I just want to see if he can do it again before we decide whether we back off him and get him ready for the spring races.

“He’s by the sire of the moment, Zoustar, and is doing everything right.”

Ronstar, who will again be ridden by Winona Costin, is among 17 nominations for the 2YO Plate over 1200 metres.

Costin is the only jockey Portelli has confirmed so far with the weather to play a part in some of his other entries, in particular Lipizzan who is also nominated for Moonee Valley.

“It has to rain for her to run,” Portelli said.

“She is a winter horse but we have summer conditions.

“I entered her for Moonee Valley in case it rained in Melbourne. I’ve got Plan A and Plan B but they both depend on the weather.”

Lipizzan’s two wins and three of her four placings have been on rain-affected tracks.

Included in those placings is a second to Champagne Cuddles in June last year with the latter second favourite for next month’s Group One Stradbroke Handicap in Brisbane.

Lipizzan and her stablemate Nicci’s Gold are both entered for the benchmark 76 handicap for three-year-olds over 1200 metres with Strome nominated in the same grade over 1500m.

“I’m a bit disappointed with Strome’s rating of 76 because she hasn’t been placed in the city,” Portelli said.

“Nicci’s Gold on the other hand has surprised me and she is getting better.”

Portelli has welcomed dual Group One winner She Will Reign back to his Warwick Farm stable with the filly in slow work ahead of her spring campaign.

 
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