Believe Yourself will be stepping up to 1400 metres for the first time in the 2014 Sires Produce Stakes at Royal Randwick on Saturday and jockey Brenton Avdulla is confident that the talented filly will relish the step-up in distance.
Believe Yourself started her 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival campaign with a fast-finishing win in the Group 2 Sweet Embrace Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on March 15 and she stormed home from the back of the field to finish fourth in the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on April 5.
Avdulla told RSN that he was thrilled with the effort of Believe Yourself and said that he expects the Sebring filly to produce an ever stronger performance in the 2014 Sires Produce Stakes this weekend.
“I am really looking forward to Saturday,” Avdulla said.
“She is a nice little filly going forward and I thought that she ran really well in the Slipper the other day.
“We weren’t expecting her to run top three or anything, but for her to run fourth was big and she is on the way up.
“I think that it is ideal and I think that she is a filly that will get out to a mile or so.
“Whatever she has done in the 1000 to 1200 trips, I think that she will benefit from the step-up on Saturday.”
Avdulla has an extremely strong book of rides at Royal Randwick this weekend and will partner classy mare Snitzerland in the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m).
Snitzerland has performed well in two starts since returning to the races, winning the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on February 15 and finishing second in the Group 2 Challenge Stakes (1000m) at Royal Randwick on March 15, and trialed well at the same venue last Friday.
Avdulla was happy with the way that Snitzerland performed in the barrier trial and believes she deserves a crack at Sydney’s feature sprint race, but admits that the daughter of Snitzel will need some luck from an outside gate.
“I thought that she trialed nice,” Avdulla said.
“We didn’t ask her to do too much and she just had a little blow out.
“The barrier is a little bit unfortunate, but she is a fast mare and she will be ridden on speed.
“She deserves a crack at the T.J.”
Snitzerland is currently available at 2014 T.J. Smith Stakes odds of $17, while Believe Yourself ($4) is an equal favourite in 2014 Sires Produce Stakes betting markets with stablemate Peggy Jean.