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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 03: Cross Counter gallops during a trackwork session at Werribee Racecourse on October 3, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Vince Caligiuri/Getty Images)

Probabeel will head down to Melbourne in a bid to win the 100th edition of the Cox Plate.

The star mare is coming off a superb win in the Group 1 Epsom handicap on Saturday at Randwick.

The 4-year-old defeated long-time rival Funstar to help secure her place in the weigh-for-age classic.

Trainer Jamie Richards spoke to Racing.com about the decision.

“Absolutely (she is in fantastic form). She’s going well so you’ve got to be happy,” Richards said.

“She will go straight there, I don’t think she needs another run. She have a couple of bits of work.

“We are just working on the logistics now of when she goes to Melbourne, and staff, and everything like that. We will work on it and see how we go.

“(Owner) Brendan (Lindsay) has been very keen on the 100th running of the race. We followed a similar path with Te Akau Shark last year and managed to finish third.

“This year hopefully we might be able to go a little bit closer.”

Speaking to The Age, Cambridge Stud chief executive Henry Plumptre says the international reputation of the Cox Plate outweighed the prize money on offer in the Golden Eagle.

Sydney based jockey Kerrin McEvoy has been booked to ride Probabeel.

He will leave Sydney after The Everest on October 17 and ride in Melbourne for the carnival, having secured a Melbourne Cup ride on Aidan O’Brien’s three-year-old Tiger Moth.

Probabeel will be using the same lead up pattern as Winx did in 2014, the Epsom into the Plate. No other runner has been able to emulate that success since.

She will be based with Anthony Freedman and will get her first look at the tricky Mooney Valley track o the Tuesday before the race.

“It’s the 100th running and I think we’ve taken a look at the opposition that’s going to be around and we think she’s a top-four chance in a race like that,” Plumptre said.

“There are some very good horses going into it. Obviously Danny O’Brien’s horse [Russian Camelot], we’ve got a lot of respect for him and a number of others, but she’s workman like this mare. She’s a dream to train. She takes things in her stride and we think she deserves her chance.”

Plumptre told The Age the decision to focus on the Cox Plate was an easy one.
“If you look at a race like the Cox Plate, you put it in the same bracket as the three-year-old colts in a Caulfield Guineas or two-year-olds in a Golden Slipper,” he said.

“They’re time-honoured races and they’ve got a great tradition. They’re nearly always won by very good horses.

“Prize money is very important, that’s why we’re running horses in Australia, but our agenda is also about our broodmare band and the Cambridge Stud brand and those yellow and black colours running in races that matter.

“I’m not saying the Golden Eagle doesn’t matter but in terms of what we’re trying to achieve a race of international reputation like the Cox Plate, it does tick a lot of boxes.”
Probabeel is a $17 chance with Sportsbet for the Cox Plate.