New South Wales trainer Shane Tritton, who prepares Suave Stuey Lombo, is adamant he is not scared of Kiwi pacing heroes Christen Me and Terror To Love heading into their first clash.
And he goes as far as to say if Monday's Flying Stakes at Ashburton was a mobile start, Suave Stuey Lombo could beat the New Zealand Cup favourites.
Suave Stuey Lombo makes his New Zealand debut in the $60,000 standing-start race, the best form guide to the NZ Cup on November 12.
After a wonderful spring in Australia, he has drawn barrier one on Monday, with Christen Me at four and Terror To Love six in a hot field.
The latter pair dominate the market for the NZ Cup and Christen Me is the $1.50 favourite to win on Monday, with Terror To Love at $3 and Suave Stuey Lombo a $21 fourth favourite with the TAB.
Tritton says while he respects the favourites, he doesn't fear them.
"Our times over home have been as good as they have been running here," he says.
"The two races they have had so far have been walks and then sprint a big half [800m].
Had Stuey been in front in those races I am sure he would have sprinted home just as fast as Christen Me.
"The difference is maybe they can both do more work than us and still produce that, which is what we are here to find out."
Tritton has been in dynamic form in NSW with his stable driver Lauren Panella becoming the new darling of the sulky in Australia.
Tritton concedes Monday will be a learning curve for horse and driver.
"I am not worried about the standing start but it is still something new for him and for Lauren a bit, too," he says.
"Maybe he will get away fast in which case we would be happy to lead and stay there, we wouldn't be handing up like a lot of the drivers do over here.
"But if he isn't as fast away as some of the big guns then maybe we will be chasing and I am realistic enough to know while we might be able to take a length off a horse like Christen Me, running past him is another thing.
"Put is this way, if it was a mobile I'd say we would lead and win. But it's not so it will be a bit of a learning experience for us."
Ashburton Flying Stakes, 2400m. - Suave Stuey Lombo (1), Choise Achiever (2), Mah Sish (3), Christen Me (4), Four Starzzz Flash (5), Terror To Love (6), Jimmy Johnstone (7), Franco Ledger (8), Fly Like An Eagle (ur), Sleepy Tripp (ur), fr.
By Michael Guerin (Courtesy of the New Zealand Herald)