Probabeel looking to turn tables in Vinery

Star fillies Funstar and Probabeel will continue their rivalry in the Gr.1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill on Saturday.

PROBABEEL winning the Heineken 3 Surround Stakes.
PROBABEEL winning the Heineken 3 Surround Stakes. Picture: Steve Hart

Funstar and Probabeel have met on four occasions, with both finishing in the top two each time.

The Chris Waller-trained Funstar has won three of those clashes including the Gr.2 Phar Lap Stakes (1500m) last start, while the Jamie Richards-trained Probabeel  got the upper hand when winning the Gr.1 Surround Stakes (1400m) two starts back.

While Kiwi trainer Richards is at home in New Zealand in lockdown under Alert Level 4 Covid-19 restrictions, an able team are deputising across the Tasman.

"Dad (Paul), Ashley Handley and Opie Bosson are all over there with the horses and they've been very happy with her," Richards said.

"She worked very nicely on Tuesday morning and we think the step up to 2000m and hopefully a bit of an improved track, we can give Funstar a shake."

The Rosehill track is currently rated a Soft 7 which Richards believes will assist Funstar more than his filly.

"Fingers crossed that they don't get any more rain and that it might improve a little bit, but in saying that, when we raced there a fortnight ago it downgraded quickly, so it is probably going to be a little bit off and is likely to suit Funstar a little bit better than it's going to suit us."

The Matamata trainer believes the step up to 2000m won't be an issue.

"She's by a champion stallion in Savabeel out of a mare that was placed in the Lowland (Gr.3, 2000m), so her pedigree suggests that she can get over a bit of a trip.

"The way that she races, I think indicates that she can get over a bit of ground as well. She relaxes and then builds and finishes off."
NZ Racing News