Avdulla hopeful Fireburn can be first filly since Burst to win Triple Crown

The last filly to win the Triple Crown Burst living at Newhaven Park at 32 years-of-age

Star jockey Brenton Avdulla has such a high opinion of Fireburn going into the Group 1 $500,000 Moet & Chandon Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on Saturday, he has compared her to Golden Slipper winner Estijaab.

The 31-year-old led from start to finish on the then two-year-old filly with a stunning ride in the 2018 edition of the Slipper.

But this weekend he will be going for a rare Triple Crown with Fireburn, as well as the premier Group 1 rider for the 2022 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.

Fireburn’s trainer Gary Portelli has such a high opinion of his two-year-old filly that he told horsebetting.com.au the world would be her oyster if she was to win her last start, the $1 million Inglis Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on April 2.

Well, she did that convincingly by 1.5 lengths, after Avdulla’s unforgettable ride on her to salute in this year’s Golden Slipper (1200m) last month.

2022 Golden Slipper (Rosehill, 1200m)

Avdulla has a similar opinion of her, and he believes she can also be competitive over a mile.

“She’s definitely up there. Estijaab is the best two-year-old I’ve ridden previously. She won a Golden Slipper for me,” he told horsebetting.com.au.

“But they’re two different fillies. She was full-speed, whereas this filly if she keeps progressing I think she’ll eat up the mile.

“She relaxes, she’s a very kind ride and she’s got plenty of potential.”

The small field and Fireburn’s recent outstanding form has her rated as the -181.82 favourite with horse racing betting apps to record her fifth consecutive win on Saturday.

If she does that, it would complete the Golden Slipper-ATC Sire Produce Stakes-Champagne Stakes treble, which comprises the coveted juvenile triple crown.

Only six two-year-olds have previously been able to pull off this clean sweep of the series – Pierro (2012), Dance Hero (2004), Burst (1992), Tierce (1991), Luskin Star (1977) and Baguette (1970).

The only filly to win the Triple Crown was Burst – 30 years ago.

Avdulla said all signs were pointing to Fireburn making an authoritative step up to 1600m on Saturday.

“She’s been going great. Obviously the 1200 in the Slipper was an amazing victory,” he said.

She won well over 1400 the other day, and she profiles as though the mile will suit her on Saturday.

2022 Sires’ Produce Stakes (Randwick, 1400m)

“She’s been the standout two-year-old all season. You’ve obviously got to respect Anthony Cummings’ filly (She’s Extreme) – she hasn’t been far off her the past couple of starts.

“And a couple of others are getting to the mile. Let’srollthedice (for Danny O’Brien) will improve again over the mile, and so will Kerrin McEvoy’s horse (Williamsburg).

“She’ll have to repeat what she’s been doing and bring good form. If she does, she’ll be right at the finish.”

Avdulla was certainly not expecting this kind of autumn-carnival success.

He suffered an undisplaced fracture of his C7 vertebra in the base of his neck when he was involved in a horror fall from the ill-fated Xtremetime in the Silver Shadow Stakes at Randwick last August.

The former premier Sydney jockey and multiple Group 1 winner was forced to spend the spring on the sidelines while two horses he was booked to ride, Private Eye and Think It Over, had very successful race campaigns.


But now he’s on the verge of creating some significant history going into the Moet & Chandon Champagne Stakes.

“It’d be pretty special (to win), obviously with where we’ve come from. I was sat out over spring and I wasn’t expecting much at this time, either,” Avdulla said.

“If she wins I’ll be the leading Group 1 rider of the carnival. It’d be a big thrill – to get a Triple Crown no filly has done it for 30 years.

“If she can do it she’ll make history, and it’ll be nice to get a bit of history alongside her.

“The body is feeling good.”

Avdulla also likes his chances on Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott’s five-year-old Shout The Bar in the $600,000 Schweppes All Aged Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on Saturday.

The mare is rated a +2000 chance of winning with online bookmakers, after her last start was a victory in the Group 2 $300,000 BMD Group Sunline Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley on March 25.

“If she repeats what she did last start I think she’ll be right in the money,” Avdulla said.

“She probably just needs a drying surface. If she hits a wet track like she did with her first-up run (well behind and last in the $200,000 Guy Walter Proven Thoroughbreds Stakes over 1400m on February 26) – she didn’t go.

“So she’d like a drying track.”

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