Gary Portelli to expose Secret Lady in 3yo trial before MM 2yo

Rosehill winner Secret Lady will trial against older horses as part of her education process.

Secret Lady will have an unusual barrier trial which her trainer Gary Portelli hopes will teach her more about race craft than just running fast.

The two-year-old filly will run in a Warwick Farm trial on Tuesday against three-year-olds with Portelli reasoning she will gain more than she would against her own age.

Ben Melham, who rode stablemate She Will Reign to win the Golden Slipper in March, will partner Secret Lady in the trial with a view to riding her at Randwick on December 30, two weeks before the $2 million Magic Millions Classic at the Gold Coast.

Secret Lady finished second on debut at Rosehill on November 11 and two weeks later led all the way to win at the track.

“Against other two-year-olds in a trial, I reckon she would just go out and lead and run them off their feet,” Portelli said.

“I want her to learn to settle and get home strongly so against the stronger three-year-olds she should be able to do that.

“The ATC kindly accommodated my request and Ben Melham will ride her.”

Portelli said She Will Reign was coming along slowly but surely as she gets ready for the autumn.

“At the moment the plan is to run in the Rubiton Stakes at Caulfield in early February as a lead-up to the Oakleigh Plate,” Portelli said.

“Then we will look at Sydney.”

She Will Reign had a deliberately abbreviated spring program, winning the Group 1 Moir Stakes at Moonee Valley before finishing unplaced in the $10 million Everest.

To win the Moir, She Will Reign came from the back of the field to nab Adelaide mare Viddora on the line.

The Lloyd Kennewell-trained Viddora has since reinforced the form with victory in the Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes in Perth.

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