Portelli Excited By Chances of Rebel Dane in 2014 Stradbroke Handicap

June 2nd, 2014

Currently amidst a riding contract abroad in Hong Kong, jockey Tommy Berry has been confirmed to return to Brisbane this weekend to partner leading chance Rebel Dane in Saturday’s featured Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm Racecourse.

Jockey Tommy Berry has been confirmed to partner Rebel Dane in the 2014 Stradbroke Handicap

Jockey Tommy Berry has been confirmed to partner Rebel Dane in the 2014 Stradbroke Handicap. Photo: Race Horse Photos Australia

With regular rider Glen Boss confirmed to take the ride on exciting prospect Srikandi, trainer Gary Portelli was quick to snap up the services of in-form hoop Berry following both a standout autumn carnival and impressive stint overseas already.

“He’s ridden the horse in trackwork before,” Portelli told AAP.

“Anyone that can go overseas and dominate the way he has, shows how much maturity he has.

“As a kid Tommy used to run around the streets with his pushbike and tell me he wanted to be apprenticed to me when he grew up.

“To get a Group 1 race where you’ve got a great chance in it and to have a jockey that’s riding so well is a plus.”

Finishing fourth in the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) last time out, Portelli revealed the California Dane entire pulled up in perfect order and is expecting a notable performance this weekend after working well.

“The day after the 10,000 I could have raced him again, he was that well,” Portelli said.

Contesting an impressive record of six wins and two places from just 15 competitive appearances on track so-far, Rebel Dane completed a strong and consistent preparation over the spring of 2013; winning the Group 3 Show County Quality (1200m) first-up and continuing to build in form and class on his way to a resounding maiden victory at the highest level of Australian racing in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m).

Returning to racing in similarly impressive form this year, the stallion out of Texarcana finished second to the world’s leading sprinter Lankan Rupee in the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) first-up and finished an unlucky fifth in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) prior to making the trip north of the border to contest events over the 2014 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.

Currently featured as the sole occupant of the second line of betting for success in the 2014 Stradbroke Handicap, Rebel Dane can be taken at generous $6.50 to claim this weekend’s headline event.

Aiming for an incredible sixth consecutive victory this weekend, Srikandi is outright favourite in early betting markets to win the 2014 Stradbroke Handicap at $4.60 odds.

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