Trainer Gary Portelli is delighted with Rebel Dane heading into the 2015 William Reid Stakes, but he admits that luck in running will play a key role in the Group 1 event at Moonee Valley on Friday night.
Rebel Dane has not been seen at the races since he finished seventh behind Terravista in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) at Flemington on November 8 and he has been set for a first-up tilt at the Group 1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) for several months.
The California Dane entire has impressed Rebel Dane with his performance in a barrier trial at Warwick Farm on March 12 and his effort in an exhibition gallop last week and he told Racing Ahead that he does not think he can have the five-year-old any better heading into the 2015 William Reid Stakes.
“He is great and I am really happy with him,” Portelli said.
“It has been the perfect prep and I’ve had a long prep with him, he has been aimed at this race for a long time now and I will be glad to see the gates open.
“He trialed really well, he worked nice between races at Warwick Farm and he had another follow-up work-out on Monday and he was very sharp in his work there.
“His recovery was really good and to me that shows he is ready to go.
“He looks sensational and he is as good as I had him before the T.J. last year when he ran second.”
Rebel Dane has had three previous race starts at Moonee Valley and he has performed well in races like the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) and Group 1 Moir Stakes (1200m) without having any luck at the venue.
The Group 1 winner has been allocated barrier seven for the William Reid Stakes on Friday night and Portelli is hopeful that Rebel Dane will receive the luck that he requires to score a second win at the highest level of racing.
“He has had a couple of go’s at the Valley and been a bit unlucky,” Portelli said.
“It is obviously going to be a tough little race again, but with the Valley it is often about luck and he hasn’t had a lot so far.
“He is overdue.
“It is just a matter of how the race is won and whether we get the right amount of luck needed around the Valley – that is the trick.
“It is not going to be a walk in the part for anybody.”
Portelli is yet to decide where Rebel Dane will head after running in the William Reid Stakes on Friday night, but he is keen to send his star galloper to Brisbane for races like the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) and Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m).