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Globetrotting mare Ortensia is showing promising early signs ahead of an autumn campaign that is likely to kick off in the 2013 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) at Flemington.
The seven-year-old has made a full recovery from a gruelling overseas campaign and trainer Paul Messara is pleased with her condition heading towards the Group 1 sprint.
Messara said the daughter of Testa Rossa is likely to have a barrier trial in January before contesting the event formerly known as the Lightning Stakes.
“She’s back in work and going well at this stage,” Messara told Racing Victoria.
“She’ll hopefully be ready to trial around mid January ahead of a first up run in the Lightning.”
The New South Wales trainer is happy to take it one step at a time but has not ruled out a trip to Dubai to defend her title in the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint which she won ahead of Sole Power in March.
The Dubai win was the first race of a long overseas stint which finished in September when a tired Ortensia finished 12th in the Sprint Cup at Haydock.
Messara’s faith to test the mare in the UK was repaid on two occasions during the five-start campaign as she showed an electric turn of foot to win both the Group 2 King George Stakes and the Group 1 Nunthorpe Stakes.
She has won Group 1 events in three continents, having also taken out the Winterbottom Stakes in Perth in 2011.
The experience down straight tracks in the UK will hold Ortenisa in good stead for the first-up Flemington outing, a track where she won the Listed Mumm Stakes in November 2011.
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