Last start Manikato Stakes winner Rebel Dane has arrived safely in Hong Kong looking for another upset win in the Group 1 HK$18.5m Longines Hong Kong Sprint (1200m) at Sha Tin on Sunday.
The Gary Portelli trained Rebel Dane scored his second Group 1 win when Ben Melham drove the $61 outsider up along the rails to score a massive upset in the $1m Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on October 21.
It was just over three years since Rebel Dane score his first Group 1 victory when he narrowly won the $400,000 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield during the 2013 Melbourne Spring Carnival.
Rebel Dane is listed as a $19 chance for the Hong Kong Sprint with Ladbrokes.com.au and Portelli has reported that the seven year old is ready to fire again on the International stage.
“He’ll have an easy week; we’ll keep him fresh and ready to explode on Sunday hopefully,” Portelli said.
“We’ve done everything we need to do at trackwork. He doesn’t need any more gallops.
“That was the good part about flying up later is that we were able to do all our work at home, now we just have to get him acclimatised, trotting and cantering.
“Ben Melham’s up there already, he’ll be trotting and cantering him tomorrow.
“He’ll have an easy day today, go for a walk and familiarise himself.
Portelli said that Rebel Dane had a long flight and will need a couple of days to return to his normal weight.
“He lost eight kilos on the way over but he cleaned up his feed bin and had a big drink which is a good sign,” Portelli said.
“Hopefully he puts it back on in the next few days.”
The barrier draw for the Hong Kong Sprint will take place on Thursday December 8 and Portelli is hoping for an inside gate.
“A good barrier draw is imperative,” Portelli said.
“One to five would be nice. To have a chance in the race he needs to be able to take up a good position.
“There doesn’t seem to be a stand-out horse this year and it looks like it will come down to whoever has the most luck in running.”
Local sprinter Lucky Bubbles heads the market order at $3.60 ahead of the Japanese pair of Big Arthur at $5 and Red Falx at $7.50 while the Gary Moore trained Takedown is Australia’s other representative in the Hong Kong Spring and is marked at $10.
Takedown is another last start Group 1 winner and headed to Hong Kong after winning the $1m Crown Perth-Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) at Ascot in Perth on November 26.
Market order for Hong Kong Sprint at Ladbrokes.com.au: $3.60 Lucky Bubbles, $5 Big Arthur, $7.50 Red Falx, $9 Aerovelocity, $10 Not Listenin’tome, Takedown, $11 Amazing Kids, $17 Peniaphobia, Pure Sensation, $19 Rebel Dane, $21 Signs Of Blessing, $41 Strathmore, $51 Growl, Super Jockey.