Metric mile challenge for Mabeel

Mabeel (Opie Bosson) earning a trip to Trentham when scoring at Ellerslie.

Mabeel (Opie Bosson) earning a trip to Trentham when scoring at Ellerslie.

Mabeel could earn an early introduction to Group One competition if the lightly-tried galloper passes a distance test at Trentham on Saturday.

The Cambridge five-year-old will head into new territory after winning four of his eight starts up to 1400 metres.

“He’ll run in the Anniversary to test him over a mile and to see if he can get the trip,” said Natalie Young, who trains the Savabeel gelding with her partner Trent Busuttin. “Depending how he goes and if he gets the distance, he could possibly run in the Thorndon. He’s bred to get the mile.

“It’s taken a while for the penny to drop with him. He used to be a bolter, but he’s a lot more manageable now.”

Mabeel was a first-up winner this preparation at Te Rapa before he finished runner-up to Casillas (who was in receipt of two and a half kilos in weight) at Ellerslie and a return to Auckland last time resulted in further success.

“He won impressively on Boxing Day after he had to work hard at both ends,” said Young.

Tardily away, Mabeel strode to the front 1000 metres from home and he rallied strongly in the straight to beat the favourite Perfect Fit and the Gr. 1 New Zealand Derby placegetter Sound Proposition.

– NZ Racing Desk.