Just Dreaming heads Lees Provincial bid

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April 13, 2018 - 04:18 PM

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Dropping back from Group One company to the $500,000 Provincial Championships final should work in Just Dreaming's favour but Kris Lees is still wary.

The Newcastle trainer has seven chances in the race and although Just Dreaming is the fancied runner, barrier 13 might bring the mare back to the pack at Randwick.

"She'd be the pick of them but she's going to need a bit of luck from the gate," Lees said.

"She's probably got the form on the board but I think it's a very competitive race."

Just Dreaming won the Wyong Provincial Qualifier (1350m) in early March and a fortnight later stepped up to elite level, and was far from disgraced when seventh in the Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill.

In a bunched finish Just Dreaming was only a length off winner Daysee Doom.

Just Dreaming was the $3.60 favourite with the TAB on Friday, the Wyong qualifier runner-up Manhattan Mist was the $6.50 elect.

The Kim Waugh-trained gelding has drawn barrier seven with Brenton Avdulla to ride while Lees will rely on the nous of Hugh Bowman.

Lees, who won the Provincial Championship with Danish Twist in 2016, did not dismiss Serene Miss ($7.50) who won the Gosford qualifier on March 17, although she drew the outside gate.

"You can't discount her but she's untried at 1400 and again she's drawn an awkward alley so it makes things hard for her," he said.

Lees is also represented by Bastia, Kool Vinnie, Tawfiq Boy, Princess Posh and Hallelujah Boy, who was promoted after the Michelle Ritchie-trained Can't Find Slippy was withdrawn because of a foot abscess.

"This is a good strong team but there's plenty of chances outside of mine," Lees said.