Victorian trainer Peter Moody is confident his visiting mare Plucky Belle can give the locals a run for their money in the Railway Stakes 2013 in Perth on the weekend despite her wider draw for the Ascot classic.
One of five interstate raiders engaged in this Saturday’s capacity $1 million Group 1 Carlton Draught Railway Stakes (1600m) field, Mossman mare Plucky Belle came up with barrier 14.
That has the potential to become gate 12 if the four emergencies come out of the Railway Stakes field, which is still a wide draw for the in-form five-year-old.
Moody however believes it is a good starting positing for the Melbourne Cup Day winner who will be ridden by Luke Nolen on just 53kg.
“It’s an ideal gate for a back marker, she settles in the second half of the field, so we just have to hope for a good genuine tempo and get the right run in the race,” he told Perth Racing.
For her nice one and a quarter length victory in the Group 3 Lavazza Short Black (1400m) at Flemington on November 5 she carried 54kg and had barrier 14 (of 16) so the weight and gate are both better this weekend.
It is a notable class rise for her however with Plucky Belle having been tested at Group 2 level just once in her 16 starts.
That was a game fourth to Skyerush in the Group 2 Emancipation Stakes (1600m) at Randwick back in April where she had a luckless run getting caught up more than once.
The Railway though will be her first Group 1 assignment and in the latest markets she pays $8 to win.
She is one of just four single-figure fancies in the Railway Stakes betting markets led by Wez Hunter’s Emirates Stakes runner-up Smokin’ Joey ($4.60).
Despite the race boasting two past winners in Mr Moet (2012) and Luckygray (2011), their wide barrier 20 and 17 draws respectively have opened it right up.
The others under $10 in the markets are then Queensland-trained mares Longport ($6.50) and Fire Up Fifi ($9) drawn in gates 12 and 18.
Nolen is also confident Plucky Belle has the right form to take out the Railway and get the jockey back into the Group 1 winners’ stall.
“I don’t think the draw is a disadvantage because she has to be ridden in the second half of the field,” he said.
“We drew wide at her last run and she is produced like that. She has a devastating turn of foot.
“I see her being in a similar position to that last start.
“Her first two runs have been excellent and she deserves a chance at the race.”
He returns after a fall in the mounting yard at Caulfield on Saturday that injured his knee and saw him miss the winning ride on Floria in the Group 3 Summoned Stakes (1600m).
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