Gary Portelli finally settles on conventional race for Seeking Asylum   Leave a comment

Gary Portelli finally settles on conventional race for Seeking Asylum

Date
July 24, 2015 – 1:23PM
Unconventional: Trainer Gary Portelli.Unconventional: Trainer Gary Portelli. Photo: Sylvia Liber

Gary Portelli has never been one for convention and, in the dying days of her two-year-old season, will finally start Seeking Asylum, a winner of three races already, against her own age.

The $100,000 Inglis Premier yearling is a daughter of South African Golden Slipper winner Asylum Seeker and has trudged an unorthodox route racing against – and beating – older horses in preparation for her first start in Sydney on Saturday.

Seeking Asylum has already ventured to Bathurst, Newcastle, Goulburn and Kembla Grange before landing at Canterbury for her fifth and final run of the campaign.

“The way the two-year-old races in Sydney have been there’s been massive fields and we decided to work around that,” Portelli said.

“Her first start at Bathurst she won and that puts you in a position where you have to race in Sydney on a Saturday so I was forced to keep her at the provincials and in the country against the older horses going through her grades. She has done a great job.

“I was looking to give her a break after [winning at Kembla] last week, but she pulled up so well and this race was there as the last two-year-old race of the season for her.”

If Seeking Asylum’s race career has been a little out of the ordinary, so was her journey to end up in Portelli’s Warwick Farm yard.

So flighty as a yearling being readied to go into the ring, Portelli was prepared to put a line through the potential purchase, but changed his mind only moments before the hammer was due to drop.

And he anticipated having to pay much more than what he eventually did for the well-bred daughter of Sebring.

“She was a flighty, cantankerous thing and when she came out to walk she was a chestnut with a flashy mane and tail,” Portelli said of his Elite Thoroughbreds buy.

“She wouldn’t walk and just played up, giving her handler a helluva lot of trouble. When I saw her parade before she went into the ring she settled a lot more and I liked her then.

“She’s been a horse that hasn’t shown a lot and has been quite a fat horse. It’s taken quite while to get her into shape and she was that big she was like a show horse. Now she’s become athletic and the rest is history.”

Portelli warned of the threat Gai Waterhouse’s second-starter Balboa Park, an impressive debut winner at Newcastle, would pose at Canterbury after Ladbrokes shopped him as a $3.10 favourite on Friday evening. Seeking Asylum was on the second line of betting at $3.60.

But Portelli said he was more than happy with his filly’s handicap, just half-a-kilogram more than Matthew Smith’s Angel’s Touch, whose only win to date has been in a Wyong two-year-old maiden.

Read more:http://www.smh.com.au/sport/horseracing/gary-portelli-finally-settles-on-conventional-race-for-seeking-asylum-20150724-gijmyb.html#ixzz3gnn2ydT8

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Posted July 25, 2015 by belesprit09 in Uncategorized

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