Trainer Adam Durrant has admitted to an attack of nerves and excitemnet ahead of This’ll Testya’s much-anticipated run in the Schweppes Handicap (1200m) at Ascot on Saturday.
The Testa Rossa mare has won her opening two races in sensational fashion and has grabbed national exposure as the next rising star of WA racing.
This’ll Testa won her Bunbury debut by 4 ½ lengths and eclipsed that margin when she stepped out for her maiden appearance at Ascot on 7 December.
Staring a red-hot $1.30 favourite on tote, the four-year-old gave her rivals a galloping lesson when under William Pike she bolted in by 6 ¾ lengths.
Durrant says he is excited to be involved with a horse of This’ll Testya’s ability, but he is also keen to hose down expectations against the growing hype.
“I’m really excited, but big expectations are being put on her and there has been big hype,” Durrant told Tabradio.
“It’s probably a bit more than I generally like, but I’m really proud I’m the lucky one who has got to take her to the races.
“There are some big comparisons going on like comparing her to the likes of Black Caviar which is unfair to her and a bit disrespectful to Black Caviar.
“It’s a nice horse to have that’s touched the imagination of the public, but there is a long way to go yet before we start talking those situations.
“There is a little bit of nerves probably because of that side of things and people hyping her up.
“But it’s a good thing for racing that a horse captures the imagination and who knows where we will end up.”
This’ll Testya has drawn barrier one in a field of nine and is the $1.10 favourite to extend her unbeaten record.
William Pike retains the ride.
Durrant says This’ll Testya has come on perfectly since her last start romp.
“She is really good and that takes the pressure off,” Durrant said.
“You take a horse to the races and you know you have covered every base and they have done everything perfect on the way through.
“She has come on fitness wise and looks as good as she can.
“She has held her condition and her work has been spot on.
“I can’t imagine why the same horse won’t turn up tomorrow (Saturday) and fingers crossed we have something for everyone to get excited about.”