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The Doomben 10,000 shapes as a significant race for Count De Rupee and his connections

A momentous afternoon awaits Count De Rupee and his trainers Robert and Luke Price if they can pull off a $1 million coup by winning the Doomben 10,000.

For Count De Rupee, the race is a chance to showcase his wares against Everest contender Mazu, while for the father and son training partners, it is a genuine shot at a first Group 1 win.

If last-start Victory Stakes winner Count de Rupee can upstage Mazu, the $3 favourite for Saturday’s 1200m feature, he surely has to be considered for a slot in the $15 million The Everest.

“It’s D-day for us a little bit,” Luke Price said.

“If we can measure up to Mazu, then we will certainly earn ourselves a ticket in The Everest, I believe.

“We have drawn a lovely barrier, we map well, there is good speed around us. It’s a big, roomy straight at Eagle Farm. I’m really looking forward to it.”

Price is also hoping to tick off a bucket list item by snaring a coveted major.

He and his father have enjoyed tremendous success with their small team since joining forces, winning feature races with the likes of Count De Rupee and Jamaea, but Group 1 opportunities are limited.

“We haven’t won a Group 1 yet, but it is certainly on the to-do list,” Price said.

“We haven’t had a heap of Group 1 runners, so I think it’s our first really genuine chance of winning a Group 1.”

Count De Rupee has drawn barrier five and will be partnered by Brock Ryan, who is also seeking a breakthrough success at the highest level.

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