She is Sydney’s leading lady of racing, she has the most number of Golden Slipper 2012 chances of any trainer, and the last time she went into the world’s richest juvenile’s race with a five-strong contingent she ran the trifecta. So can Gai Waterhouse do it again this Saturday?
Waterhouse will go into the $3.5 million Group 1 AAMI Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens this Easter Saturday with five livewire chances, four of which are under $20 in the latest bookmaker.com.au markets.
She has already won herself three Golden Slippers starting with the Jim Cassidy-ridden Ha Ha in 2001, then three years later Chris Munce rode Dance Hero to victory in 2004 before her most recent success back in 2008 with Sebring and Glen Boss.
For her maiden Slipper victory in 2001 Waterhouse actually had five horses in the race.
One was scratched with a leg injury the day before and of the four that ran three scored the Golden Slipper trifecta with Dance Hero beating home stablemates Charge Forward and Alinghi.
Word is Waterhouse is overdue for another Slipper and she hasn’t looked this good a chance in a while.
“Can’t complain,” Waterhouse said happily.
“The time I trifectered it (the Golden Slipper) I had five horses.
“One got pulled out the day before with a sore foot
“We are due again.”
Of course the horse everyone is tipping as the one to beat in Rosehill Race 7 on Saturday is Mick Price’s Blue Diamond Stakes winning filly Samaready.
Despite drawing gate 11, the unbeaten daughter of More Than Ready remains the firm $2.50 favourite in the Golden Slipper odds at bookmaker.com.au.
On the second line of Golden Slipper betting is then Waterhouse’s first, the also yet to be defeated Pierro ($6 bookmaker.com.au).
Spruiked as the most likely to hand Waterhouse her fourth Golden Slipper trophy, Lonhro colt Pierro comes off the Silver Slipper Stakes – Todman Stakes double at Rosehill.
They have however drawn the inside alley for the Golden Slipper and a few people, including Waterhouse herself know this probably isn’t the ideal starting position for the youngster.
“He handles the wet so that’s the only reason why I’d be worried about barrier one,” Waterhouse said.
“The barriers, it’s a bit like you with mum and dad, you don’t have any choice.
“We go from one to about 11 I think my runners are.”
Samaready’s trainer Price isn’t discounting the colt and has him tipped as the main danger coming home.
“I would be thinking that Pierro drawing the pole is not going to be doing much work there,” Price said.
“Coming out of barrier one he’s going to have plenty of petrol in the tank coming towards the end of the race.”
Waterhouse remains confident Pierro will be competitive, however, drawing comparisons to her 2008 Golden Slipper winner Sebring who came off a flawless six wins from six starts before taking out the big one.
“He’s very tough and he’s very consistent, Waterhouse said of Pierro.
“He’s unbeaten going into this race…and the last horse that was like that was of course Sebring.”
The next best fancied of the Waterhouse clan is then No Looking Back paying $9 at bookmaker.com.au.
The Redoute’s Choice filly has come up trumps with barrier three as she races for the first time since her second behind Samaready in the Blue Diamond Stakes down in Melbourne, a performance that caught Waterhouse’s eye.
“No looking back goes down to Melbourne and was back of the field and run on for a fabulous second,” she said.
No Looking Back is then followed in the markets by Magic Millions Classic winner Driefontein ($15) and promising galloper Raceway ($15), both juveniles raced by Denise Martin’s Star Thoroughbreds.
“Raceway is just the most laid back character in the world,” Waterhouse said.
“He’s the sleeping giant.
“Driefontein is as tough as teak.
“She’s ready to go, well and truly ready to go.”
Martin agreed with Waterhouse’s assessment of the duo and was thrilled to be represented in the race with two genuine chances.
“She doesn’t need a lot of work, she looks amazing, I saw her on Sunday, she’s ready to go,” Martin said of Driefontein.
“I thought the filly mightn’t have developed enough (for the Sipper) but here we are and she’s unbeaten.”
Raceway too was close to being unbeaten, but he went down to fellow Golden Slipper rival Ashokan in the Group 3 Skyline Stakes (1200m), after suffering minor interference and a Slow track, at Randwick on March 17.
“His sectionals that day at Randwick were the fastest 600, 400, 200 (metres) of the day of either of the two-year-old races,” Martin said of that run.
“So all going to plan, he can be right there.”
Rounding out Waterhouse’s 2012 Golden Slipper horses is then the John Singleton-owned Later Gator who is a $71 roughie in the markets.
To get behind any of Waterhouse’s runners, or lock in another horse to win the Golden Slipper 2012 on Saturday, head to our preferred online bookie bookmaker.com.au.