Flemington horseman Danny O’Brien is confident the timing and conditions are right for his smart filly Shopaholic to break through at elite level in the 2012 Tattersall’s Tiara at Eagle Farm Racecourse on Saturday.
Pins three-year-old Shopaholic has won five of her 13 career starts to date and was stepped up to Group 1 company for the first time last start on June 9 in the $1 million Stradbroke Handicap (1400m).
Seeing Queensland for the first time and hampered by the extreme outside barrier 18 of 18, Shopaholic managed to finish a credible five and a half lengths away seventh to Peter Moody’s upset winner Mid Summer Music.
She returns to Eagle Farm for the season’s final Group 1 this weekend, taking on Stradbroke winner Mid Summer Music this time in the $500,000 Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m).
Shopaholic enjoyed dual Group victories in Melbourne during February when defeating champion filly Mosheen in the Group 3 The Vanity (1410m) at Flemington, and then Soft Sand in the Group 2 Angus Armanasco Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on Blue Diamond Day.
This is some imposing form.
Mosheen would go on to prove herself as one of the country’s best horses winning the Australian Guineas – Randwick Guineas – Vinery Stakes triple, while Colin Little’s lightly-raced Dansili filly Soft Sand is the $4.40 favourite in the Tattersall’s Tiara odds at bookmaker.com.au for tomorrow.
Occupying the second line of Tattersall’s Tiara betting is then Shopaholic at $5.50.
Drawn well in barrier eight with Dwayne Dunn to ride, Shopaholic certainly has claims to take down this field.
If successful she will be handing her trainer with his third Tattersall’s Tiara victory, O’Brien having prepared former winners of the race, formerly known as the Winter Stakes, with Porto Roca (2001) and Absolut Glam (2008).
He has followed the same lead-up with Shopaholic as he did with those two as well coming via the Straddie, Porto Roca having run sixth to Crawl in the 2001 Stradbroke and Absolut Glam finishing fourth to Mr Baritone.
“This is the race we wanted her to peak and I believe she has,” O’Brien said.
“Then I wanted a good track and a handy draw and we’ve got both those. So there should be no excuses.”
Other notable hopefuls in the Tattersall’s Tiara markets include Mid Summer Music paying $5.50 to post successive Group 1 wins at Eagle Farm, and the in-form Gai’s Choice at $8 to win her fourth on the trot.
Check out the full odds and betting options for all the Eagle Farm races this Saturday online now at bookmaker.com.au – home of the $300 bonus bet offer for new customers quoting the code BONUSBET!