Rebel Dane’s Golden Slipper Winner on Track for G1 Queensland Oaks
The Gary Portelli-trained Fireburn found the perfect spot in the Group II The Roses (2000m) at Doomben on Saturday to break back in the winner’s list for the first time since her heroic Golden Slipper/ATC Sires Produce Stakes double.
Jason Collett gave a performance eerily similar to that of Brenton Avdulla in the Golden Slipper to guide the daughter of Rebel Dane to a three-quarter-length win.
The Laurel Oak colourbearer advances her record to six wins, a second, and a third from 16 starts with earnings of $4,224,600.
“That was fantastic,” Collett enthused.
“She was keen early. I dropped her right down to the fence. I wanted to get her into the best rhythm I could.
“Once she got down the back, and she came back off, and a couple of lengths off the runner in front of me, I thought ‘oh, this is what I want’.
“I like the way she switched off mid-race. The distance in the Oaks shouldn’t be an issue. Easy to say now but wait until Oaks Day.”
A relieved Gary Portelli said the stable adores the daughter of his previous star pupil Rebel Dane.
“I’ve got to say that she’s a special horse to us,” Portelli revealed.
“To win a Golden Slipper at two and then to step up to 2000 metres, to run fourth in an Oaks, and the Golden Slipper hoodoo has been knocked over.
“I said before the race that if she was to win today, then there’s no way they can beat her next start.
“She was underdone, and he just rode her beautifully. It opened up at the right time and looked like the Golden Slipper replay. Up the rails and let her go.
“Rebel Dane being the great stallion that he is, and thanks to everyone letting me plan the program I have.”
A homebred for Laurel Oak and partners, Fireburn is the best of two winners from as many to race for the winning So You Think mare Mull Over, purchased by Laurel Oak for $22,000 from the Lime Country draft at the 2018 National Broodmare Sale.
Mull Over is a half-sister to dual stakes-winner Galizani from the family of Group I Flight Stakes winner Danarani.
Fireburn is from the second crop of 28 foals by dual Group I winner Rebel Dane who earned a spot on the Widden Stud roster last spring, where he covered a career-high 111 mares and will stand for $22,000 in 2023.