This Saturday the headline race of the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival runs at Rosehill Gardens with the iconic 2012 Golden Slipper, the All Too Hard-less final field for which has now been announced by the Australian Turf Club (ATC).
Earlier this morning Races.com.au reported that Nathan Tinkler’s spruik colt All Too Hard would not be accepting for the $3.5 million AAMI Golden Slipper (1200m), the world’s most lucrative juvenile’s race.
As expected the $1 million yearling, a half-brother the magnificent Black Caviar, is not among the capacity Golden Slipper Stakes field, co-trainer John Hawkes confirming the horse was fine but would be saved for next weekend’s $500,000 ATC Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) at Randwick.
“The horse is fine but the horse comes first and we decided to wait for the Sires,” Hawkes said.
“That’s it in a nutshell.
“People will talk through their pockets, but I’ve always worried about my horses and always will and nothing’s changed.
“Not always the best horse wins the Slipper and if you draw the wrong gate you’re out of business – we’ve won two but we should’ve won five. That’s the way the cookie crumbles.
“He’s only a young horse and he has a bright future, so hopefully everything will be good and he’ll bounce back in the Sires.
“I spoke to (owner) Nathan (Tinkler) and he was fine.
“Everyone in the camp is happy and that’s all that matters.”
With the brilliant Pago Pago Stakes winner out of the Golden Slipper picture, all attention moves to the Mick Price-trained Samaready.
Boasting a flawless career record of four wins form as many starts, More Than Ready filly Samaready was last seen running her rivals ragged in the Group 2 Reisling Stakes (1200m).
On Saturday she looks to repeat the Blue Diamond Stakes – Golden Slipper double achieved by former Aussie champion Sepoy last autumn.
She will also look to be the second Golden Slipper winning filly in three years following the success of the ill-fated Crystal Lily back in 2010.
The biggest danger to Samaready taking out her fifth title on Saturday looks to be one Ms Gai Waterhouse who will be represented in the 2012 Golden Slipper field by five from her Tulloch Lodge stable.
The best-backed of Waterhouse’s hopefuls is the also unbeaten Pierro.
A son of boom Aussie sire Lonhro, Pierro won the Listed Thoroughbred Breeders Plate (1000m) on debut last October before coming back to win two Group 2 features at Rosehill last month with the Silver Slipper Stakes and Todman Stakes.
Pierro is followed in the Golden Slipper markets by stablemates No Looking Back who hasn’t been seen since her second to Samaready in the Blue Diamond stakes, Magic Millions 2YO Classic winner Driefontein, and More Than Ready rig Raceway.
Also in the mix for Waterhouse is More Than Ready filly Later Gator who has just snuck into the 2012 Golden Slipper field, Luke Nolen to ride the Magic Night Stakes fifth placegetter.
Meanwhile a late entry for Queensland filly Doubtfilly has thrown her into the mix, the Stuart Kendrick-trained youngster one of the unknowns in this field.
The other early fancy in the Golden Slipper 2012 field and markets is then the Peter Snowden-trained Epaulette.
Attempting to go back-to-back for their trainer following the success of Sepoy in the classic 12 months ago, the Commands colt won the Black Opal Stakes in Canberra two starts back before their devastatingly close second to Pierro in the Todman.
Snowden will also be represented on Saturday by Exceed And Excel colt Narcissus who ran a good second behind All Too Hard in the Pago Pago Stakes last start, the trainer opting not to accept for Meidung.
Also with multiple Golden Slipper chances this year is Gerald Ryan who will have three runners in Todman Stakes fourth placed Amorino, Reisling Stakes fourth placed Snitzerland and eye-catching Magic Night Stakes runner-up Cavalry Rose.
Other notable Golden Slipper acceptors out for an upset result include Chris Waller’s Sweet Embrace Stakes winner Jade Marauder, and the John O’Shea-trained Ashokan who beat home Raceway in the Skyline Stakes at Randwick last start.
The 2012 Golden Slipper Barrier Draw will be released at midday, with Races.com.au to publish the full list of gates.
Updated Golden Slipper odds on the final field are due to be released by our preferred online bookie bookmaker.com.au shortly.
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2012 Golden Slipper Final Field
|1.||PIERRO||Nash Rawiller||Gai Waterhouse||56.5kg|
|2.||EPAULETTE||Kerrin McEvoy||Peter Snowden||56.5kg|
|3.||RACEWAY||Hugh Bowman||Gai Waterhouse||56.5kg|
|4.||AMORINO||Steven Arnold||Geral Ryan||56.5kg|
|5.||FAUSTUS||Jim Cassidy||John O’Shea||56.5kg|
|6.||ASHOKAN||James McDonald||John O’Shea||56.5kg|
|7.||NARCISSUS||Peter Robl||Peter Snowden||56.5kg|
|8.||SHELFORD||Brett Prebble||John O’Shea||56.5kg|
|9.||SAMAREADY||Craig Newitt||Mick Price||54.5kg|
|10.||NO LOOKING BACK||Craig Williams||Gai Waterhouse||54.5kg|
|11.||DRIEFONTEIN||Tommy Berry||Gai Waterhouse||54.5kg|
|12.||JADE MARAUDER||Glyn Schofield||Chris Waller||54.5kg|
|13.||SNITZERLAND||Corey Brown||Gerald Ryan||54.5kg|
|14.||CAVALRY ROSE||Christian Reith||Gerald Ryan||54.5kg|
|15.||DOUBTFILLY||Damien Oliver||Stuart Kendrick||54.5kg|
|16.||LATER GATOR (NZ)||Luke Nolen||Gai Waterhouse||54.5kg|