If Sebring Sun can make it to the $1 million Golden Rose, his trainer Gary Portelli will chalk it up as one for the little guys.
The colt takes a make-or-break step to Sydney’s first Group One race of the season when he runs in Saturday’s Up And Coming Stakes (1300m) at Randwick.
Sebring Sun has begun his campaign in style, ending his two-year-old year with a maiden victory at Canterbury in late July before his win in the Listed Rosebud (1200m) on August 8.
He is raced by long-time Portelli clients, Elite Thoroughbreds, and cost $100,000 as a yearling, getting under the guard of the bigger buyers.
“I can’t get near the prices at the sales,” Portelli said.
“It is a nightmare. I see horses I think will fetch $100,000 but they go for $200,000 or more.
“The big guys come in and get the cream of the crop so Sebring Sun is one for the underdogs.
“I was lucky to get him for $100,000 and I’m lucky to have him racing at this level.”
Portelli sees no problems with Sebring Sun running out a strong 1300 metres in Saturday’s Group Three race which is 100m less than the Golden Rose on September 12.
“The way he won last time he looks to me as if he won’t have a problem,” he said.
Hugh Bowman will be back aboard Sebring Sun on Saturday after Brenton Avdulla filled in last Saturday week.
There were 12 nominations taken on Monday headed by Group One winner Press Statement.
“He is the horse I would be most afraid of if he runs,” Portelli said.
“The others are pretty much the same horses he beat last time and he’s improved since then.
The Chris Waller-trained Press Statement, who won the Group One J J Atkins Stakes (1600m) in June, is one of two entries for Waller who has also nominated midweek winner Devil Hawk, a brother and stablemate of 2013 Queensland Derby winner Hawkspur.
Voilier, second to Sebring Sun in the Rosebud, will again be among his opponents.
Article from justhorseracing.com.au