The next chapter in the story of star pacing fillies Ladies In Red and Tough Tilly will be written in Ballarat on Saturday night.
The Emma Stewart-trained duo are poised for the seventh showdown of their careers in the Nutrien Argent 3yo Classic, 2200m, at Bray Raceway.
Ladies In Red, the reigning Victorian two-year-old pacing filly of the year, holds a 5-1 advantage over Tough Tilly in the head-to-head bouts, but the latter proved victorious in the last on December 31 last year.
That was a group 1 Vicbred Super Series final, with Tough Tilly going on to claim more elite level success in the Australian Pacing Gold final for three-year-old fillies in May while her stablemate was out for an extended spell.
Tough Tilly, the horse who races for EB Research Partnership Australia, will be first-up since that triumph on Saturday,, while Ladies In Red returned from more than eight months away from the races with a breath-taking victory in the AJ Prendergast Memorial Oaks in Ballarat on September 2.
Kate Gath will again drive Tough Tilly, which has drawn barrier eight, while David Moran is with Ladies In Red from barrier seven.
Stewart-trained big gun in Mach Dan is another exciting runner returning to the races at the meeting.
The Horsham and Mildura Pacing Cup champion will line-up in the TAB Gammalite Free-For-All for what will be his first start since running third to Expensive Ego in the group 1 Australian Pacing Gold final for four-year-old entires and geldings in May.
Ladies In Red has won 10 of 11 career starts, plus the second to Tough Tilly, for $271,000.
Tough Tilly's record stands at nine wins and six seconds from 17 starts for $351,000.