His usual wide draw looks the greatest judder bar on Te Akau Shark's road to his first Australian victory at Randwick in Sydney today.

Trainer Jamie Richards and jockey Opie Bosson have got the track conditions they wanted, the right level of group one and have no complaints about the freakish chestnut's form heading into today's A$600,000 Chipping Norton.

But the draw, barrier 13 of 14, is the most annoying aspect of the 1600m weight-for-age feature.

"The draw isn't great but he never seems to draw well over here," says Bosson, who heads to Sydney to ride Te Aka Shark and Probabeel.


"That means he might need some luck but after what he did at Te Rapa last start I couldn't be happier with how he has come back.

"And Jamie tells me he has improved in his work since, so that gives me a lot of confidence."

Te Akau Shark was explosive winning his first group one at Te Rapa three weeks ago with his overall time and sectionals suggesting he is up to the Aussie stars. But he was already in the rare position of not needing to prove he was good enough to win at the highest level there, having run a close second to Kolding in the Epsom last October and then third to Japanese champion Lys Gracieux in the Cox Plate.

Those placings were also from poor draws and in far stronger fields so even from his wide marble it is understandable why Te Akau Shark is the $2.50 favourite today. It is a group one but it hardly the strongest because while Happy Clapper, Fierce Impact and Avilius are top class, they all have things against them today suggesting Dreamforce could be the biggest danger to The Shark.

He used his early zip to down Te Akau Shark in the Tramway over 1400m at Randwick back in September but The Shark looks bigger and better now. Randwick should also provide an ideal surface for the big fella, with the track a dead4 last time and with an even cover of grass so there shouldn't be too pronounced an inside bias as some other tracks.

That improvement in track conditions also pleases the Kiwi pair for their other group one challenger today in Probabeel, who contests the A$500,000 Surround Stakes.

She drops back from her 1600m win in the Karaka Classic Mile a month ago to 1400m today and meet a red hot bunch of fillies, including Funstar, who had her measure twice in the spring and stunning last-start winner Flit.

Even from barrier five, Bosson expects Probabeel to get back to at least midfield and at a distance short of her best she is going to need to do something special to win.


"But the track will help," says Richards.

"We didn't want it too wet for her, like it has been the last couple of weeks here.

"She trialled really well last week, finding the line well but we realise how strong a race this is."