Group 1 winning mare Secret Admirer has opened the favourite for this Saturday’s Shannon Stakes 2011 at Rosehill Gardens, Grahame Begg’s talented galloper out to improve her credentials ahead of an ambitious Epsom Handicap – Cox Plate double attempt.
There were 11 acceptors for the $175,000 Group 2 Shannon Stakes (1500m) this year, Dubawi four-year-old Secret Admirer coming up trumps with an ideal barrier two draw.
Winner of the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) on Epsom Super Saturday last spring, Secret Admirer is third-up on Saturday after two close second place finishes this season, most recently coming within a nose of Sincero in the Group 3 Tramway Handicap (1400m) at Warwick Farm on September 3.
Begg has Secret Admirer on way to Saturday week’s $500,000 Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Randwick, for which she is the $5 second favourite behind Sincero in the Luxbet markets
The plan is then to travel down to Melbourne to prepare for the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 22, Begg having paid the second acceptance fee for Secret Admirer in the Cox Plate yesterday but not for the $2.5 million Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m).
But first Secret Admirer must contest the Shannon Stakes for which she is the $2.40 favourite for through Luxbet.
Of the 10 other Shannon Stakes acceptors the next-best fancied are the Gai Waterhouse-trained Fast Clip ($4.80) and Torio’s Quest ($5).
Snippetson four-year-old Fast Clip, winner of the Group 2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m) back in April, resumed with a brave first-up third beaten only half a length by Master Of Design in the Group 2 Sebring Sprint (1300m) at Rosehill on September 10.
That run was from an awkward barrier 10 draw and having drawn better with eight on Saturday and stepping up to 1500 metres, Fast Clip comes right into contention.
Sebring Sprint runner-up Torio’s Quest also has genuine claims for an upset in the Shannon Stakes on Saturday, Brett Partelle’s Queensland Guineas winner drawn in barrier five with Hugh Bowman engaged.
Other notable 2011 Shannon Stakes hopes paying double-figures in the early betting markets include last year’s Caulfield Cup winner Descarado ($13) who is drawn nicely in barrier four for their first-up run of the season, fellow Waterhouse-trained King Lionheart ($13) coming off a win over the track and distance and the Chris Waller-trained Triple Honour ($14).
Below is the official 2011 De Bortoli Wines Shannon Stakes final field and barrier draw.
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2011 Shannon Stakes Field & Barriers
|#||Form (Last 10)||Horse||Trainer||Jockey||Br.||Wgt.||Hcp. Rtg.|
|1||91204X5655||BOYS ON TOUR||John P Thompson||Nash Rawiller||2||57.5kg||73|
|2||134X55||FLIGHT OF PEGASUS||Scott Aspery||Chris Munce||4||57kg||72|
|3||1X9075282||BLACK JAG||Peter Hulbert||Justin P Stanley||6||53.5kg||65|
|4||551||BIG TIME||John O’Shea||Christian Reith||9||53kg||64|
|5||351||MOROCCO||Anthony Cummings||Glyn Schofield||7||53kg||63|
|6||4392||QUACKQUACK||John O’Shea||Nathan Berry||8||53kg||60|
|7||0X88X37||INDUNA||Peter Snowden||Corey Brown||5||53kg||59|
|8||452||SAINT LA BAMBA||David Payne||Jim Cassidy||10||53kg||59|
|9||5X80||STELLAR VINIA||David Payne||Tommy Berry||1||53kg||59|
|10||670||VOLATILE MATTER||John P Thompson||Brenton Avdulla||3||53kg||53|