Promising filly Lipizzan will step up to Saturday racing after upstaging favourite Envy Of All to get off the mark at the midweek meeting at Canterbury.
Trainer Gary Portelli had been worried about Lipizzan’s prospects against the James Cummings-trained Envy Of All in Wednesday’s maiden handicap (1100m).
Those fears were allayed when Lipizzan ($8) led all the way to beat the Darren Beadman-trained Tikki Bar ($5) by 1-1/4 lengths with Luxbet favourite Envy Of All ($1.75) finishing strongly under Hugh Bowman for third .
Lipizzan opened her campaign by finishing second to Debonairly in the Listed Woodlands Stakes (1100m) at Scone on May 13 and dropped back in class after discussions between Portelli and Laurel Oak Bloodstock owner Louis Mihalyka.
“I said to Louis we should just go back to a mid-weeker and win really but then I was worried about the favourite,” Portelli said.
“As it turned out it got back too far and couldn’t catch us.”
While her run in Scone gave Portelli confidence, he already suspected Lipizzan was capable when the well-performed Frolic pipped her on the line in a maiden at Canterbury in January.
“That’s pretty good form going to a midweek,” he said.
“I thought she could win first-up at Scone but she drew the outside, used a fair bit of petrol and was just found wanting over the last 50 (metres).
“We’ll have to step up to Saturday company.”