Assail Fighting for Golden Slipper 2013 Fitness

Clarry Conners’ one-time Magic Millions Classic fancy Assail has a tough few weeks ahead as she looks to get back to race fitness in time for a shot at the world’s richest juveniles’ race, the $3.5 million Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on February 6.


A hoof injury could see Assail miss out on a shot at the 2013 Golden Slipper Stakes in April

The daughter of Charge Forward is undefeated having won both of her career starts so far, a debut win at Warwick Farm last November followed 40 days later by a slashing three length romp in the Wyong Magic Millions 2YO Classic.

She was all set to jump favourite in the $2 million Gold Coast Magic Millions Classic in January however was scratched from the event on race day having suffered a foot abscess and subsequent hoof infection.

Since then Conners has been working around the clock to get the star-in-the-making back to her best after half of her hoof had to be cut away as he eyes an incredible fifth win in the classic Golden Slipper Stakes.

“The horse herself is doing magic, she is not sore at all,” Conners told Sky Sports Radio Wednesday.

“She is a tough filly and she is coming along great.

“On the Monday at the Gold Coast the vet and farrier came and cut all of the wall of the hoof away because the infection had gotten up underneath the wall of the hoof.

“They cut all of the bad stuff out and put a plastic brace across the front of her hoof to support the cut away areas and five or six tiny little screws in the outside of her hoof to hold it all together.

“It was quite a big job but they did a marvellous job.

“We treat her every day and keep it clean.

“Yesterday we took off the old plate off and put a new fibreglass one on.

“The vets were very happy yesterday. The hoof is dry and clean, all infections are gone so all we need to do now is try and promote the hoof to grow as quickly as possible.

“She gets a lot of gelatine in her feet and a hoof oil which is known as the world’s best hoof dressing. We are doing everything we can.”

The late TJ Smith holds the record for most Golden Slipper winners trained with six while Conners follows along with three others in Bart Cummings, Lee Freedman and Smith’s daughter Gai Waterhouse on four.

His most recent winner was over a decade ago with Belle du Jour back in 2000.

Confident Assail could hand him another trophy in the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival classic when at her best, the dedicated horseman is now keeping his attitude positive as he plays the waiting game as her hoof slowly grows back.

“She is an exceptional horse,” Conners said.

“She copes well and nothing worries her.

“Realistically she should have two starts in March but I don’t know how I am going to do that.

“The foot is great now I just need to get that hoof to grow as quickly as I can because I don’t want to be galloping her too early and then hurt it.

“I’ve got about half an inch of growth on the hoof though so it is coming along.”

2013 Golden Slipper second acceptances were taken this week with 196 two-year-olds still in the mix, Assail one of five entries for Victory Lodge.

While Conners is doing his best with Assail she is still listed as doubtful in the Golden Slipper odds at the online bookies around the country.

She is however still one of the top fancies at a quote of $17, Shaun Dwyer’s undefeated dual stakes winning Not A Single Doubt filly Villa Verde the $7 favouite.

Our preferred online bookie is due to release their generous futures Golden Slipper betting markets shortly.

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