Randwick horseman John O’Shea has warned punters that his returning Doomben 10,000 winner Sea Siren will take a lot of improvement from her first-up run against Buffering in the 2012 Manikato Stakes at Moonee Valley on Friday night.
While confident the daughter of Fastnet Rock will be competitive force for her four-year-old debut in the $750,000 Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m), O’Shea knows that she will be even better a little further down the track.
Her grand final aim is the $1 million Group 1 Patinack Farm Classic (1200m) at Flemington on the final day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival, Saturday November 10, and O’Shea expects her to be at her peak then.
“I’ve always been a great believer that you can’t dance every dance,” he said.
“When you go back and have a look at the history of the winners of the Patinack Farm, you see, apart from Black Caviar, that it is very difficult for sprinters to stay right up to the mark from early in the spring.
“Her main goals are later on and we want her to be coming to her peak then. Therefore it is fair to say she will be vulnerable on Friday night.”
Winner of the Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) – Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) double in Brisbane during the winter Sea Siren has drawn barrier five of 10 for the Manikato on Friday evening, a race where she will come face-to-face with Queensland star Buffering again.
The then three-year-old had Buffering’s measure when they finished one-two with just a long neck separating them in the Domben 10,000, but Buffering was able to finish ahead of Sea Siren when he crossed second to Mid Summer Music in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) where Sea Siren finished ninth as the beaten favourite.
Buffering looks to have the upper hand again for their third battle, Rob Heathcote’s five-year-old having drawn the inside alley for the Manikato and two previous wins this time in behind him.
“It would appear her and Buffering are probably the best two sprinters that are punching around in Australia at the moment,” O’Shea said.
Sea Siren worked at Moonee Valley for the first time this morning with Jim Cassidy, her regular rider also booked for the Manikato, in the saddle.
“I think her trials have been really good, but you never know until they race,” O’Shea said.
“The others have probably got a bit of race fitness on us but we’ve done the best we can to prepare her.
“She’s got a goal later in the preparation so whatever she does on Friday night she’ll improve on.”
She is also being considered for a trip to Hong Kong in December for the Hong Kong International Sprint, which is also on the radar for Buffering this summer.
“Ideally I would love to take her to Hong Kong,” O’Shea, who took Racing To Win there for the 2009 Hong Kong Mile, said.
The updated Manikato Stakes 2012 betting markets are due to be released at bookmaker.com.au shortly – Australia’s only online bookie offering you the chance to pick your own odds on the spring majors!