AccelHaving been knocking on the door in his three runs prior, Accelerato completely bulldozed it down this afternoon at Bendigo to break his maiden in emphatic style for Mornington-based trainer Tony Noonan.

Making the win even sweeter was the $28,400 VOBIS bonuses attached to the race which Noonan handsomely collected for long-term stable clients at Laurel Oak Bloodstock.

“With Super VOBIS and Gold VOBIS bonuses, this race is worth $51,000 which is hard to get,” said Noonan.

“ He has been disappointing on occasions but Brad (Rawiller) was able to just get a sit in behind, settle well and have a good kick.

By applying a slight change of tactics, Noonan was quietly confident that Accelerato was in for a change of fortunes if things unraveled as planned.

“He’s just been over-racing in his races and racing on nervous energy. We tried hard to get him into a position where he can take a sit.

We’ve worked hard on that at home with good results so today worked out good.”

Jumping well from the gates, Rawiller took hold of Accelerato behind a moderate tempo as Legal Mistress crossed from a wide barrier to provide cover for the 3-year-old son of Fastnet Rock who had led in is three runs prior.

Tracking through the bend well, a gap opened for Rawiller upon straightening as Accelerato ($4.20) effortlessly quickned under quiet riding before opening up a big margin to score by 7 lengths from Aquifer Mist ($21) and Legal Mistress ($15).

“Looking at the race, I’d expected we probably would be the leader but Tony was happy if something would go quick enough, we’d be able to get a sit as it worked out,” said Rawiller after the win.

“He had a good turn of foot so when we got the split, he was just too good.”

Having run placings in the three starts prior, Accelerato’s maiden win today took his earnings to $54,525 at his sixth career start.

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He might not have won as many two-year-old races as some of the bigger stables this season but Gary Portelli can still claim bragging rights with the performances of She Will Reign capped by her Golden Slipper triumph.

While Lindsay Park, Godolphin, Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott and Peter and Paul Snowden lead the charge for juvenile winners, Portelli has racked up 10 including the biggest of all.

She Will Reign won four races while Laurel Oak Bloodstock’s Lipizzan can make it three when she steps out at Warwick Farm on Saturday along with stablemate Nicci’s Gold who broke her maiden at Newcastle last month.

Portelli will return later this week from a short break in New Zealand for a rare Saturday meeting on his home track.

“Lipizzan has always shown ability and her form on wet tracks is a bonus at this time of year,” Portelli said.

“Rachel King will ride her again. She’s won two on her and we get to use her claim.

“Nicci’s Gold has been a little revelation.

“We didn’t expect her to win over 900 metres at Newcastle and then she’s come out and run second on the Beaumont track up there over older horses.

“I’ve always been pretty keen on her.”

Comeback jockey Josh Adams has ridden Nicci’s Gold at her past two starts and will again be aboard on Saturday when she runs over 1200 metres.

Sydney’s champion apprentice in 2010/11, Adams spent three years out of the limelight undergoing rehabilitation while serving a disqualification for a positive drug swab.

He returned to race riding earlier this year and made his first trip to Sydney on June 10 when he steered The Monstar to win the Listed June Stakes.

There were 13 entries taken on Monday for the two-year-old race including the Snowden-trained Star Galaxy who finished third to Lipizzan at Randwick on June 24.

While the two Portelli-trained fillies are trying to gain more late-season prize money, She Will Reign has returned to the stable after a break to be prepared for a two-run campaign with the Moir Stakes at Moonee Valley the proposed lead-in to The Everest at Randwick in October.

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“She is so small, she is only 420kg but has a heart the size of her body.’’

This was trainer Gary Portelli’s description of the two-year-old filly — and he wasn’t talking about his Golden Slipper winner She Will Reign, either.

Portelli made the comment after Lipizzan scored a dominant win in the McGrath Estate Agents Plate (1200m) at Royal Randwick on Saturday.

“From the first time we started working her she showed ability but I thought this might be short-lived because she is only little,’’ the trainer said. “Even when you put a saddle on her, she seems dopey and quiet, she looks like she is not interested.

“But as soon as you walk her out to the tie-up stalls, she puffs her chest out, tries to grow a hand and puts her game face on. She is all racehorse.’’

Lipizzan ($4.80) was having her sixth start for the season, scoring her second win (plus four minor placings) when she raced away from early leader Last Starfighter ($3.50 favourite) to win by nearly three lengths with Star Galaxy ($3.60) three-quarters of a length away third.

Portelli is renowned as a master trainer of juveniles and revealed he has won 10 two-year-old races this season from a team of only 17 youngsters. “We still have a couple more to come out to the races in the next few weeks, too,’’ Portelli said.

Portelli said he won’t necessarily send Lipizzan to the spelling paddock after her latest win.

“I’m a great believer that when fillies are racing well, you keep them going,’’ he said.

“She is showing no signs of training and the prizemoney with the BOBs bonuses is so good — she has picked up $74,000 for her owners today.

“I will see how she comes through this race before making any decisions but on what she showed today, we might be able to find another race for her over winter.’’

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There is not a lot of Sebring filly Lipizzan but as Gary Portelli said after she took out the opener at Randwick – “she has a heart as big as her body.”

The two-year-old was put in a perfect trailing spot by in form apprentice Rachel King and Lipizzan did the rest, surging past leader and race favourite Last Starfighter.

“None try harder than her,” Portelli said.

“She had 52kg on her back, she is fit horse and never runs a bad race. She is a great little horse for Laurel Oak syndications – they bred the horse. I raced her mother too. She is bred to handle the wet being by Sebring by a Commands mare so it’s a good time to have her in.”

Lipizzan, who has never missed a place in her six starts, which includes two wins, only tips the scales at 420kg and is only 14’2 in height.

“She has a heart as big as her body,” Portelli said. “It just goes to show that it’s not the size of the dog in the fight it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”

“There is a little bit of upside to her and next preparation I think we might see a really handy filly.”

The victory made it four straight Saturdays in which two kilo claimer King, who is apprenticed to Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott, has ridden a winner.

“She has done a good job today stepping up in trip. She was able to switch off nicely in behind them and put them away well. She was still a bit green in front as she does get a bit lonely,” King reported upon dismounting.

“She saw out the 1200m very easily and would have come if something had come to her. She is very genuine and doesn’t know she is a little horse.”

The Gary Portelli stable continued a great run of success with their juveniles at Canterbury on Wednesday with a front running victory for Lipizzan, a $120,000 Inglis Easter purchase for Laurel Oak Bloodstock from the Newhaven Park draft.

A brave second in the Listed Woodlands Stud Stakes at Scone when resuming from a spell, Lipizzan was sent out favourite for this 1100 metre maiden despite drawing near the outside.

Ridden forward by apprentice Rachel King, the daughter of Sebring quickly worked across to lead and was never headed to win by a length and a quarter.

“She’s always shown a lot of potential,” said Gary Portelli.

“She drew wide at Scone and fought on strongly, so I always thought if she dropped back to a midweek race she could just win.

“She’s a BOBS filly, so now we’ll try and win as much prizemoney with her as we can.”

With a win and three placings, Lipizzan has already won over $70,000 for her large group of Laurel Oak Bloodstock owners.

The 13th two year-old winner this season for Sebring, Lipizzan was bred by Laurel Oak in partnership and is the first winner for Absolutely Flying, a Commands three-quarter sister to Group III winner Camporella.

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The successful racing career of Rebel Dane, a dual Group 1 winning entire, has concluded and a new phase as a stallion at Swettenham Stud this spring now awaits.

While the team at Swettenham Stud is full of excitement at the arrival of the stunning seven-year-old, it has been a sad past week for all at Portelli Racing as they said goodbye to their stable favourite.

It was evident by the way Portelli spoke about his old champ, that there was a real sense of respect and awe, looking back at what this horse has accomplished throughout his career.

“He was such great flag bearer for the stables, a great booster to staff morale racing at Group level each carnival, and the old saying rings true “you don’t know what you miss till it’s gone,” Portelli said.

“Horses like him don’t come around very often, not with his record. He has more wins and placings at Group 1 and 2 level than what most horses going to stud have had starts,” Portelli said.

“He raced the best, at the highest level, season after season, he couldn’t dodge them, he always put up a fight. He is a genuine Group 1 horse, he raced and beat the best horses in the country.”

“He is a war horse, he has finished sound, he never had an issue, a real trainers horse.”

“I hope he sets the trend for breeders to appreciate well-campaigned, well performed and proven gallopers, and the advantages of breeding to them.”

Louis Mihalyka of Laurel Oak Bloodstock, Rebel Dane’s managing owner, reflected on his career and is excited about his future as a successful stallion.

“Having a horse race in Group 1 or 2 company for over 30 starts is an owner’s dream. The fact he was competitive virtually every time he raced made it even more special,” Mihalyka said.

“The Manikato Stakes win was the highlight as there were nine Group One winners in the ten horse field. Once he drew well we knew he had a chance and the fact he delivered was a magic moment in life for all of us.

“Bred on a Danehill/More Than Ready cross, he has the pedigree to go with his looks and soundness, to be as good at stud as he was on the racetrack. We are really looking forward to the next stage of his career.”

Rebel Dane will stand for the a fee of $12,500 (incl. GST)

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Tony Noonan Racing :: Back from injury, Mr Optimistic storms home from last for big win at Mornington

Having overcome two serious tendon injuries, it was a delightful sight at Mornington for owners of Mr Optimistic, who stormed his way back into the winners’ circle for local trainer Tony Noonan.

With Mr Optimistic resuming from a spell having endured two consecutive tendon injuries over the past 18 months, Noonan was understandably ecstatic with the result.

“It’s just such a relief to see this horse back in the winners’ circle because he showed us so much as a younger horse before he sustained two serious injuries,” Noonan said.

“Full credit has to go to the owners because they have been extremely patient and understood what we have been trying to do.

“He (Mr Optimistic) had only had two runs in 18 months so to have him finally sound, it was just good to see him hitting the line like we saw earlier in his career”

Slow out of the gates under rider Jake Noonan, Mr Optimistic settled at the tail of the field behind a strong tempo with the younger Noonan remaining ever patient as the race unfolded ahead of him.

Stuck behind a wall of horses down the side of the track, Noonan started looking for runs prior to straightening but with the field fanning wide, he elected to go back towards the inside, spotting the leader six lengths upon straightening.

When the gap finally opened by the 125m mark, the Mr Optimistic ($4.80) surged through under patient hands-and-heels riding to hit the front and ultimately score by half-a-length from Bisseu ($8) and Bicondova ($15).

“This horse has 62 kilos here today so just riding him that way and riding him for a bit of luck was always going to suit him if the luck played its way,” Jake said after the win.

“He just came onto the bridle right when I needed him to from the 500 and things just opened up on the inside.

“He’s a classy horse on his day. He’s stakes-placed and was just too good. He’s a classic Tony Noonan horse – ridden cold to finish off.

“A big thank you goes to the owners because it can be quite frustrating when you’ve got a horse of his ability and you don’t get to quite reach the standard you know he can make.

“The fact that he’s got that potential has kept us in the game and it’s good that they’ve stuck by us and stuck solid.”

The win was the second of Mr Optimistic’s career having shown promise as a 2-year-old when placed in the Group 3 Hampden before succumbing to consecutive tendon injuries.

The 4-year-old Domesday gelding was the first foal of Group 3 winner Be Positive, also trained by Noonan for Laurel Oak Bloodstock, and is the older half-brother of She’s Positive (Sepoy) who Noonan trained to win the Adelaide Magic Millions Classic.

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