Lees to test Coolmore waters with mares

Lees to test Coolmore waters with mares

The Coolmore Classic is a race close to trainer Kris Lees’ heart and he hopes at least two of the stable’s mares can confirm their credentials for the Group One race when they clash at Rosehill.

His father and champion trainer, the late Max Lees, had a special affinity with the Coolmore Classic, winning it five times.

Kris Lees is yet to add his name to the honour roll but he hopes to get another chance this year if Miss Fabulass, Invincible Gem and possibly Delectation Girl perform in Saturday’s Millie Fox Stakes (1300m) at Rosehill.

Miss Fabulass had no luck in two spring starts in Sydney so Lees took her to Brisbane where she posted a spectacular Listed win at Doomben and finished runner-up in The Buffering.

Invincible Gem also campaigned well during the summer, highlighted by her second to Quackerjack in the Villiers Stakes under a big weight.

The Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill on March 14 has been a long-range target for Miss Fabulass, while Invincible Gem also has the fillies and mares feature as a goal.

“Invincible Gem will probably go to stud at the end of the season so we’re trying to get her to the Coolmore Classic in three weeks,” Lees said.

“They’re all resuming, albeit a couple of them are coming off short turnarounds.

“But they’re all in good order and they will all appreciate a forgiving track, which we will get.”

Six mares will line up in the Group Two Millie Fox and three of them – Irithea, Savatiano and last year’s winner White Moss – are natural, on-pace runners, which could bode especially well for backmarker Miss Fabulass.

“Small field, it might set up nicely for her,” Lees said.

“Either way, she won’t be far away from them. I’d expect she’d run well.”

Former European, Delectation Girl, returns for her second Australian campaign with her best result in six starts for Lees a Group Three placing behind Nettoyer at Randwick in October.

Credit: AAP