Wyong preview: Trainer Nick Mitchell’s decision to break his budget looks set to pay off
Trainer Nick Mitchell’s decision to go over budget to buy Lot 893 at the Inglis Classic Yearling Sale in 2019 could see the ‘debt’ almost wiped in one hit on the Central Coast on Thursday.
Mitchell makes the short trip from Gosford to Wyong with three major players on the card, none better equipped for a win than the Classic graduate, Miss Checkoni.
Miss Checkoni is a daughter of Widden Stud resident Nicconi who is best known as the sire of Nature Strip.
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A Galaxy and Lightning Stakes winner in his heyday, Nicconi raced past 100 winners for the season on the weekend thanks to his own personal ‘Super Saturday’ siring five winners around the country.
On top of that, Miss Checkoni’s dam, Incheck, is a minor broodmare gem with six of her seven foals to have raced so far, all winners of 21 races between them
“That’s actually why we bought her,” Mitchell explained.
“I paid $28,000 for her. I was actually only going to go to $20,000 but just seeing her walking around I thought to myself ‘I’ve got to bet on her, I’ve got to get her’.”
Miss Checkoni has trialled three times dating back to November last year but nothing she has done so far can top her Heat win at Wyong on May 17.
Jean Van Overmeire has been given the task of riding Miss Checkoni at her debut at Wyong on Thursday. Photo: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
“She is still maturing and still learning so she will improve a lot for the run. She’ll get over more ground too in time but she is a nice horse and is doing everything right,” Mitchell said.
“She is quite leggy but she can handle the bends and the ups and downs and is full of potential.”
Joining Miss Checkoni on the float are the four-year-old geldings Rumpshaker and his former Victorian-housed stablemate Company Line who turned in a career best performance at Wyong two starts back.
Three weeks later, the son of Australian Horse of the Year Dissident faded to finish fifth of the eight runners in a 1400m maiden at Hawkesbury.
“The plan was to step him up in trip so we had him in the mile race there and in the 1350m but the 1350m race just looked weak,” Mitchell said.
“He led them up at Hawkesbury over 1400m and probably went a bit too hard. He wasn’t supposed to lead, it was just the way it played out and he just got run over by a couple of horses with as bit more dash at the end.”
Company Line was an incredibly cheap horse, not for his original owners however, but it’s profit all the way for his current supporters.
“They (the original owners) paid $300,000 for this horse as a yearling,” Mitchell said.
“Mick Price had it for two starts, Bjorn Baker had it for one, then it went onto on Bloodstock Auction and Shane Edwards bought him for $3000.”
As for Rumpshaker, barrier 3 and Aaron Bullock, are two reasons why Mitchell believes his son of Stratum can post his third win this campaign in the Wyong Roos Benchmark 64 Handicap (1350m).
PORTELLI’S YOUNGSTER READY TO WALK THE WALK
A run of the mill provincial maiden at Wyong on Thursday will take on special meaning for trainer Gary Portelli if his WA acquisition Walkin’Talkin’ can win as expected.
Every trainer strives to turn their colts into successful stallions which is the case with Walkin’Talkin’s father – I’m All The Talk.
A renowned speed machine, I’m All The Talk’s true talents went unfulfilled in his time at Portelli’s Warwick Farm headquarters but still managed to win a Skyline Stakes.
“I’m All The Talk had a bit of a throat problem and had an operation which went wrong and he nearly died but he came back to run second in The Shorts after being very sick,” Portelli recalled.
“He could have been anything had he not had issues. I don’t think he could have won the Slipper but he could have won the Oakleigh Plate, that’s for sure.
“I think he straightened up five in front in the Oakleigh Plate and only got beat a length a half.”
Trainer Gary Portelli feels Walkin’Talkin’ is in the right race at Wyong on Thursday to claim his maiden win. Photo: Grant GuySource:The Daily Telegraph
Interestingly, Walkin’Talkin’s dam, Scuff, who was a stakes-winner in Perth also ran in an Oakleigh Plate herself, finishing down the order behind Australian Horse of the Year, Weekend Hussler.
I’m All The Talk stands in Western Australia; Walkin’Talkin’ was put through the local Magic Millions sale there in 2010 where Portelli was on hand to secure him for $45,000.
“He is probably a more powerful version of I’m All The Talk,” Portelli said.
“He is flashy though; his dad had the silver mane and tail and a bit of white on him. This bloke is a plainer chestnut but he has got everything in the right place.
“He is a monstrous two-year-old and he’s got enough ability to win this on Thursday, that’s for sure.”
Walkin’Talkin’ was an ultra-impressive trial winner at Hawkesbury a month before finishing fourth of 10 in a maiden in the nation’s horse capital.
“He got a little bit lost at Scone at his first start; he really didn’t know how to finish off.
“He got to the front when they straightened but he didn’t really come on. He was probably one run short but he’s certainly found the right race I feel now,” Portelli said.
Originally published asWyong preview: Mitchell’s investment to pay dividends
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