Flemington straight to suit Levante in the Newmarket Handicap

Michael Dee will aim to put the disappointment of Saturday’s Australian Guineas behind him and refocus on another Flemington Group 1, this Saturday’s $1.5 million Newmarket Handicap (1200m).

The New Zealander will team with star Kiwi mare Levante in Australia’s most famous sprint race.

Dee will partner the five-year-old for the first time at trackwork later this week but suspects the straight track will suit the fast-finishing daughter of Proisir.

“I think the straight should suit,” he said. “She used to get quite far back in her races and then really rattle home.

“That might have brought her undone a couple of times but lately, this prep, she has been jumping well and been put in a prominent position and been able to win like that.

“I’m meant to be coming here next week for a canter around on her on Thursday or Friday and I’ll try to get to know her in a short time.”

Levante, who is trained by Ken and Bev Kelso, has won 10 of her 15 starts, including the Group 1 BCD Group Sprint over 1400m at her most recent outing.

The start prior she ran a sizzling 1:06.18 to win the famed Group 1 Telegraph (1200m).

Levante, who has been ridden by either Ryan Elliot or Samantha Collett in New Zealand, is a $15 chance in TAB’s Newmarket Handicap odds, which is dominated by Home Affairs at $2.80.

A Group 1 win so soon after the Australian Guineas would be welcome by Dee, who conceded he should have veered left instead of right at the top of the Flemington straight aboard Pinstriped.

“I would love to have that again,” Dee said post-race. “Because he is a big horse, I was mindful of trying to get out and look for runs but as it turned out I could have stayed well in and possibly could have got a few runs in there.

“There was a big wall of horses and we got chopped out. If we got a good run through he probably goes close.”

Despite encountering a chequered passage for much of the long Flemington straight, Pinstriped surged the line to claim fifth position, just over four lengths from winner Hitotsu.

About RS NewsWire

Racing and Sports is a global publisher of online horse racing form and information, and a leader in interactive racing technology. Racing and Sports is at the cutting-edge of information technology, allowing businesses and website users first access to emerging technologies.

Bookmaker Why Bet Sign Up Full Review
Bet Now at ladbrokes Back Yourself with Ladbrokes! Join Review
Bet Now at neds Back a Winner with Neds! Join Review
Bet Now at palmerbet Sign up to Unibet and start betting in minutes! Join Review
Bet Now at tab Sign up to TAB and start betting in minutes! Join Review
Bet Now at playup Sign up to PlayUp and start betting in minutes! Join Review