Townsville Bulletin

Star hoop’s grand plan

- BEN DORRIES

BRETT Prebble’s golden spring could be poised to strike another extraordin­ary crescendo as he bids to become the latest in an exclusive club of jockeys to have claimed Australian racing’s grand slam.

Already with the Golden Slipper (2010 – Crystal Lily), Melbourne Cup (2012 – Green Moon) and the recent Caulfield Cup romp on Incentivis­e to his name, Prebble is hoping Kiwi mare Probabeel can tick off a bucket list item.

Only eight jockeys have completed the Aussie grand slam, the most recent of which was Craig Williams who swept all four majors when he won the 2019 Melbourne Cup on Vow And Declare.

Prebble, who has already scored five Group 1s in a remarkable spring carnival, can achieve a rare piece of racing history at The Valley on Saturday.

“It’s definitely something I’d like to tick off,” Prebble said. “I’ve had a lot of success over the spring carnival and now I’m on a roll, I’d like to keep going.

“There’s plenty of quiet times so I’m just riding the wave for as long as I can.

“Hopefully I can peel off another big one.”

While he has scooped plenty of big race wins in Australia, Prebble cites winning the 2006 Yasuda Kinen in Japan in front of a massive crowd as potentiall­y his most memorable racing moment.

But if he could collect the grand slam on Saturday, it would be right up there with anything he has achieved in racing.

Probabeel, last seen toppling Zaaki in the Group 1 Might And Power, is rated a $16 chance on TAB to snare her fifth career Group 1 on Saturday.

Prebble knows the mare likes a firm track and if she gets conditions to suit he feels she can spring a Cox Plate surprise.

The Valley track was rated a Good 4 on Wednesday but there is up to 10mm of rain forecast for Friday and potentiall­y up to another 8mm on Cox Plate day.

“If she gets a footing that is favourable to her, they are going to know she is there,” Prebble said.

“Her work at Flemington on Tuesday was seriously good work and she is in top form.

“We had a nice bunny to follow in her work on Tuesday and her last 600m was lovely, she is very fit and spot on for the Cox Plate.

“As long as she gets the track conditions she likes, she will run a big race.”

JOCKEYS TO WIN ALL FOUR AUSTRALIAN MAJORS

 ?? ?? Brett Prebble returns to the mounting yard aboard Probabeel after winning the Might And Power at Caulfield. Picture: Scott Barbour/getty Images
DAMIEN OLIVER NEVILLE SELLWOOD ROY HIGGINS MICK DITTMAN JIM CASSIDY CHRIS MUNCE PAT HYLAND CRAIG WILLIAMS
Brett Prebble returns to the mounting yard aboard Probabeel after winning the Might And Power at Caulfield. Picture: Scott Barbour/getty Images DAMIEN OLIVER NEVILLE SELLWOOD ROY HIGGINS MICK DITTMAN JIM CASSIDY CHRIS MUNCE PAT HYLAND CRAIG WILLIAMS

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