She may have just won the Magic Millions Classic quinella in a controversial protest result with stablemates Driefontein and No Looking Back, but already Sydney’s leading lady of racing Gai Waterhouse has her eyes on another even greater prize, the Golden Slipper 2012.
Waterhouse had the $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic (1200m) in the bag at the Gold Coast on Saturday whatever way the protest went with first past the post No Looking Back ($9) and second over Driefontein fighting it out for the lucrative first prize in the steward’s room.
In the end it was $3.40 favourite Driefontein and jockey Tommy Berry, also aboard last year’s Magic Millions Classic winner Karuta Queen, who claimed the $1.64 million for connections Star Thoroughbreds.
It was a devastating result for those involved with No Looking Back whose hoop Nash Rawiller was found guilty of shifting out in the final stages of the race.
There is still hope of a multi-million dollar pay day for No Looking Back’s connections, however, with Waterhouse’s star duo set for a much spruiked rematch in the world’s richest race for juveniles.
The $3.5 million Golden Slipper Stakes (1200m) will bring Rosehill Gardens to life this Easter Saturday, April 7, and after her brave performance in the Magic Millions, you can bet that No Looking Back will be out to atone.
Despite what the history books will officially say, No Looking Back achieved something truly incredible in being first over in the MM Classic as no previously Magic Millions Classic winner did so at just their second start.
The daughter of Redoute’s Choice from 2006 MM Classic winner Mirror Mirror debuted with a smart win over 1000 metres at Warwick Farm on November 19, and Saturday was her first run since.
No Looking Back has improvement, and lots of it, in her and that makes her the ideal Golden Slipper 2012 prospect to back at Luxbet when futures markets are released.
As for Waterhouse, she is thrilled with both fillies heading into the Golden Slipper.
“I’ve always said they are both Golden Slipper material and both are very exciting fillies,” Waterhouse said.
“The two of them are very professional, what you see is what you get, you press the button and they do exactly what the jockeys want.”
Saturday was Waterhouse’s fourth Magic Millions Classic win, and she will again be looking for win No. 4 in the Golden Slipper.
The Magic Millions Classic has been an excellent form race for Waterhouse and her Golden Slipper winners.
Dance Hero completed the double in 2004, and in 2001 Golden Slipper winner Ha Ha earlier ran a close fourth to stablemate Excellerator in that year’s MM Classic.
The 2001 Golden Slipper was made even more sweeter for Waterhouse as she claimed the Trifecta, Ha Ha turning the tables on Magic Millions Classic winner Excellerator who ran second, while the then Waterhouse-trained Red Hannigan crossed for third.
Waterhouse’s most recent Golden Slipper win came in 2008 with former boom juvenile turned champion sire Sebring.
“I’ve won two Golden Slippers off this race (the Magic Millions Classic) and these two will be great chances to do the same,” Waterhouse said of No Looking Back and Driefontein on Saturday.
Waterhouse will have more than just her two fillies-of-the-moment in Golden Slipper calculations this autumn.
Her other top prospects for the $2 million first prize include her four-length Warwick Farm winner last Saturday Raceway and Lonhro colt Pierro who took out the Listed Thoroughbred Breeders Plate (1000m) at Randwick in their sole start to date on October 1.
Currently over 1300 two-year-olds are still among the Golden Slipper 2012 entries, but that figure will be cut at second acceptance stage on Tuesday, February 7.
Driefontein is set to race once more before she attempts the prestigious MM Classic – Golden Slipper double.
No Looking Back, on the other hand, could first attempt to win the $1 million Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 25 during the Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival.
Explosive More Than Ready gelding Raceway is also tipped to contest the 2012 Blue Diamond Stakes.
“Driefontein only needs to have one run before the Slipper, so she will stay in the stable and have a crack at one of the Slipper lead-ups,” Waterhouse said.
“No Looking Back has always been better on her Melbourne leg.
“The Blue Diamond is a real option for her.”
Futures betting on the Blue Diamond Stakes 2012 is already open at our No. 1 recommended bookmaker Luxbet with Raceway top of the odds at a quote of $4.40.