A return to familiar routine back home in New Zealand has Kiwi superstar Melody Belle primed for a smash-and-grab Australian mission in the Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes, according to trainer Jamie Richards.
Te Akau Racing confirmed plans late on Monday to bring their ultra talented daughter of Commands back to Australia at the end of the Melbourne spring to target a 13th career Group 1.
Melody Belle was runner-up to Magic Wand in the Mackinnon Stakes last year after winning the Empire Rose Stakes seven days earlier.
The six-year-old is currently in New Zealand after heading home following two unplaced runs in the Missile Stakes and Winx Stakes to start this preparation.
It put a Melbourne Spring Carnival tilt in doubt however Melody Belle has since relished her time back in New Zealand and added two more Group 1s to her resume from as many starts, including the Livamol Classic.
"Here comes a dozen"
"Here comes the Queen of the Bay"
"Here comes the Queen of New Zealand racing"
"Melody Belle… Waaaaay too good!"
Group 1 #12 up for @TeAkauRacing's Melody Belle in the Livamol Classic pic.twitter.com/pEGvS3hJ6R
Richards and Te Akau Racing are now prepared to give Melody Belle another chance on Australian soil to show just how good she can be.
“She is going well and we are looking forward to getting her back there,” Richards said.
“I didn’t actually believe she was going that bad (in Sydney).
“She ran into a really wet track first-up in the Missile and got too far back then she was trying to improve her position in the Winx Stakes when she found some trouble.
“We just needed to get her home and back in her routine and she is all good now.”
Melody Belle is already a Group 1 winner at Flemington. AAP Image/Vince CaligiuriSource:AAP
The Mackinnon Stakes will be staged at Flemington on November 7 with Richards confirming his star mare will likely arrive in Australia the same week.
“A flight booked about the 4th of November,” he said.
“We might get their sooner depending on what happens but we’re keen to get her back to Flemington.
“It’s a big roomy track which suits a mare like her that gets back in the field.”
Melody Belle is on the third line of betting with TAB.com.au at $8 for the Mackinnon Stakes.
Originally published asMelody Belle primed for Melbourne smash and grab
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