No protest over Buffy and Bringagem’s chances at Towac on Tuesday

Dec 12, 2017

After starting his career here Warwick Farm-based trainer Gary Portelli has long been a staunch supporter of Racing Orange, and he’ll continue that this week when he brings four chances to Tuesday’s Christmas at Towac TAB meeting.

That quartet includes the two embroiled in a first and second protest at the same track seven days ago.

Three-year-old filly Buffy broke her maiden in the fourth at Towac Park last Tuesday after veering into the path of Bringagem after she broke clear in the straight. Although the latter was finishing quickly, the protest was dismissed.

“It was 50-50 in a way and I obviously had two different hats on for that one,” Portelli, a Golden Slipper-winning trainer, said.

“If you look at the front-on view, [Buffy] actually followed the car tracks out there. She’s young and green, and probably wasn’t sure what to do once she was there with nothing in front of her.

“But I actually think she cost herself a more convincing win by doing that, when she went left I think that closed the margin a bit and if she had of stayed straight she probably would’ve pulled clear by a few lengths.

“But it was nice to see her win for her owners, who bred her as well.”

Naturally after Buffy’s win the pair won’t run together again on Tuesday, the filly is marked down for the Central West Bin Cleaning Class 1 Handicap (1400 metres) while Bringagem will jump from barrier 10 in the Kitchens and Cabinets Orange Maiden Plate, also over 1400.

“It gives us two good chances,” Portelli said.

“The filly, she’s running well and even though the percentage of maiden winners then winning again in their next start is really, really low, I think she’s a real chance.

“I’m pretty confident (Bringagem can break his maiden) He was a bit unlucky obviously last week but I thought that was run was outstanding anyway, and I think he’ll be better over a bit more distance.

“Being honest, he’s probably not fast enough for (metropolitan) races yet so we thought we’d take him to the country, give him a crack to win some prizemoney. He’s run a fourth and a second so far, so he’s doing that.

“He’s part-owned by a few guys in a syndicate from out that way too, in the country, so it’s good to be able to take him out there and let them see him run.”

Buffy will carry 54.5kg and jump from barrier four, and is facing three other last-start winners in Garry Lunn’s Duchess Darla, Bob Caton’s Rawson Crossing and Bruce Cross’ Adaboycharlie – the latter’s victory came at Orange too.

Bringagem, in the next race, shouldn’t have too much trouble from the wide lane, Gayna Williams’ Oddfellow and Lee Lunn’s Quirion also look well-placed while Portelli has Prince of Mars from barrier seven too.

Sass’n’twinkle, for Orange’s Sonja Sharp, has placed in its last two starts but might need some luck after a barrier 12 draw.

While Portelli won’t be heading back to the colour city himself, he said it’s a nice to give stablehand Greg Miles a chance to return to the central west.

“He’s from Portland, so he always sticks his hand up when we accept at Orange, Bathurst, Dubbo or anyway in that region,” Portelli said.

“I know a few people don’t love the city trainers coming out but it’s great for the club out there, where it’s all about turnover, and it’s good for us to send a few horses which might not quite be up to it in the city.”

Portelli also has Shadow of Mordor running in the meet-opening Maiden Handicap (1280m). Nicci’s Gold will scratch from the Benchmark 64 Handicap (1280m) after an unlucky sixth at Hawkesbury on Sunday.

The Class 1 Handicap jumps at 3.05pm and the Maiden Plate at 3.40pm.

Matt Findlay - Central Western Daily - 11/12/2017