Sign up to the TDN daily edition

Enter your details below to subscribe to the TDN Australia & NZ daily edition.

Portelli slipping into Group 1 mode again

4 min read

Written by Paul Vettise

Warwick Farm trainer Gary Portelli is thinking if the shoe fits, wear it. Twice that is.

He celebrated success in the G1 Golden Slipper S., last year with She Will Reign (Manhattan Rain) and he’s got her little half-brother Time To Reign (Time For War) on the same path toward the world’s richest 2-year-old event.

He admits the colt will have to develop his racing manners, but time is on his side to get the youngster sorted out.

“He’s still so green and he doesn’t know what he’s doing.” - Gary Portelli.

“He’s still so green and he doesn’t know what he’s doing,” Portelli said. “We have to do a lot to win the Golden Slipper, but it is only his first preparation.”

Time To Reign has displayed the raw ability and following a an easy debut win at Randwick he kept his perfect record intact with a smart performance to win Saturday’s Lack Group H., at Rosehill from the first-timer Jonah (Hinchinbrook).

That effort earned him time in the paddock before he is prepared for the greatest juvenile prize of all.

“He was pretty calm and relaxed before the race and looked outstanding in the coat.” - Gary Portelli.

“He was pretty calm and relaxed before the race and looked outstanding in the coat,” Portelli said.

“The second horse loomed up quickly, but he had a good dig and got the job done.

“With the pedigree he’s got we’d be mad not to aim him at the Golden Slipper. He’ll more than likely run in the Silver Slipper first-up like I did with the other girl.”

Time To Reign worked his way to the front on Saturday and he found a strong kick when Jonah emerged to lodge his claim

“He’s still very raw and doesn’t know what’s going on.” – Jason Collett.

Time To Reign as a yearling

“He was nicely away from the barriers and urged him to get across,” rider Jason Collett said. “He’s still very raw and doesn’t know what’s going on.”

Bred by part-owner Garry Bachell, Time For War is out of the winning Charge Forward mare Courgette who is a grand-daughter of the G2 Reisling S., winner Sunshine Sally (Cheraw {IRE}).

She is a sister to the Listed Hawkesbury Gold Cup winner Jack Attack and the family of the G1 Toorak H., winner Penghulu (Belele).

Double Doomben strike

In other 2-year-old news, Eagle Farm trainer Kelly Schweida and jockey James Orman celebrated a winning Doomben double with Pocket Pistol (Exceed And Excel) and Gala Miss (More Than Ready) to further his assault on next year’s rich Star Gold Coast Magic Millions race day.

The former showed dramatic improvement to take out the Lite N’Easy H., after tailing the field home on debut while his stablemate was making her first appearance on the weekend.

Pocket Pistol as a yearling

“He was three deep the other day and was still there at the 200 metres before he felt the pinch on the wet track.” - Kelly Schweida.

“He was three deep the other day and was still there at the 200 metres before he felt the pinch on the wet track,” Schweida said.

A $240,000 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale buy, Pocket Pistol boasts a strong North American background and is from the family of the multiple Group 1 winner and sire Grand Slam (USA) (Gone West {USA}).

Schweida secured Gala Miss from the same auction, paying $170,000 for the grand-daughter of the G1 AJC Sires’ Produce S., and Flight S., winner Fashions Afield (Redoute’s Choice).

Massive bonus

Gala Miss is owned by an all-female syndicate and therefore eligible for the Magic Millions Women's bonus worth $500,000.

Schweida also has another top Millions contender in The Odyssey (Better Than Ready), who returned to the stable on Saturday after a break following his dominant debut victory at Doomben last month.

The colt was secured for $30,000 and is a son of Jessica’s Hope (Snitzel), a half-sister to the Irish black type winner Judicial (USA) (Law Society {USA}.