No Shadow Of Doubt - Wide Cup Gate A Positive

May 12, 2017

Gary Portelli is convinced the Testashadow’s wide draw is more a help than a hindrance for the Scone Cup. Most trainers would prefer an inside barrier but Portelli said Testashadow is better drawn out wide.

“This horse takes four or five strides to get into his work so it suits him being out there,’’ Portelli said. “There doesn’t seem to be ‘mad’ speed and I can see him sliding across without having to work too hard early.’’

Testashadow lobs at Scone after finishing third in the Hawkesbury Gold Cup.

“I thought Testashadow ran a really good race at Hawkesbury but it seems like they have forgotten about him again,’’ Portelli said in an obvious reference to the sprinter-miler’s odds of $15 with TAB Fixed Odds. “If he gets any sort of luck, he will be in the finish.’’

Testashadow is a rising six-year-old but he has been in career-best form this season with a win in the $1 million Magic Millions Cup, and minor placings in the Group 3 Liverpool City Cup and Group 2 Ajax Stakes before Hawkesbury.

He has improved his career statistics to seven wins (11 placings) from 34 starts with prizemoney now exceeding $1.2 million — a tremendous advertisement for syndicators Elite Thoroughbreds and Portelli’s business.

“To the owners credit, they were offered $400,000 for Testashadow when he was a three-year-old but they knocked it back,’’ Portelli said. “We didn’t want the owners to sell him but understood if they did as it was a lot of money but they decided to keep him and it has certainly paid dividends."

Portelli revealed he will withdraw Mocassin Miss from the two-year-old race on Friday after the filly drew the extreme outside barrier but he gives Next Level ($9) a good each-way chance in the $80,000 Country Cup (1400m).

“Mocassin Miss is a nice filly and we will wait another day for her,’’ Portelli said. “But Next Level is should run a good race. He has taken a little while to get fit but his run in the Tamworth Cup (fifth to Timeless Prince) showed he was close to his best form. He won’t be far away.’’

News: Ray Thomas, Daily Telegraph