Not even downing a 1:48 miler at the trials has been enough to boost Ricky May's confidence with Helena Jet heading to Addington tonight.
The reason is simple: Adore Me is among her rivals for the $40,000 Premier Mares Championship.
Helena Jet will start second favourite behind the champion mare and goes into the race in career best form.
Not only has she won her last two starts but she downed former top US 3-year-old Johny Rock in his first New Zealand outing at the Rangiora trials on Monday.
Johny Rock has been syndicated by Graham and Paul Court for serious money and is being aimed at our major 4-year-old races after competing at the highest level in North America, where he took his sensational time.
He wasn't pushed on Monday after leading in a 2000m trial but Helena Jet still ran him down fair and square in a 56-second last 800m. But May knows that running down a fully-fit Adore Me is another thing all together.
"She is very hard to beat, Adore Me, because she is so relaxed," said May.
"She rolls along at open class type times and then kicks hard when Mark [Purdon] asks her to go.
"My mare is racing really well and she has gate speed so we will try and go forward early and if we can lead then we would probably trail Adore Me.
"If that happens it will be interesting to see how close we get to her.
"I probably don't think we can beat her but I'd say we would run second for sure." The race being over 1950m means the wide draw of Pemberton Shard is a major disadvantage even though she was placed twice behind Adore Me at Alexandra Park last month.
The missing piece of tonight's equation is NZ's other great mare Bettor Cover Lover, who is being saved for the group one mares at Addington in a fortnight as it provides automatic entry into the Ladyship Mile in Sydney on March 2.