Gary Portelli is enjoying a great season with two-year-olds but the youngsters have a way to go to topple dual Group One winner Rebel Dane from his position in the stable hierarchy.
Although things didn’t to plan for Rebel Dane in last month’s International Sprint in Hong Kong his trainer has been buoyed by how well the seven-year-old has maintained his condition in quarantine before another autumn campaign.
Rebel Dane scored an upset win in the Manikato Stakes in October to earn the trip to Hong Kong.
After two weeks in quarantine in Hong Kong, Rebel Dane has almost completed another two weeks at Werribee near Melbourne.
“He comes out of quarantine on Monday and then he will go to Jazcom Park near Camden for another week,” Portelli said.
“It’s only a short stay because we have to get him ready for the TJ Smith.
“He has put on eight kilos since he’s been at Werribee which is pleasing to see.”
Rebel Dane finished second to Lankan Rupee in the 2014 TJ Smith and midfield last year when the race was won by Chautauqua.
Portelli will rely on Falconic for Saturday’s Magic Millions Classic at the Gold Coast after pulling the pin on Single Bullet’s trip to Queensland when he finished second at Warwick Farm.
Although Saturday’s second prize money would have got him into the Classic field, Portelli was not prepared to take the risk.
“We are mindful of his future,” he said.
“We want another Rebel Dane. We don’t want him leaving his career on the track at the Gold Coast.”
She Will Reign is so far the benchmark for the stable’s juveniles with two wins from two starts which have earned her top billing in Golden Slipper markets.
“She Will Reign will go to the Silver Slipper and the Reisling Stakes,” Portelli said.
“She needs to win one of those to be a Golden Slipper chance.”