James McDonald will be hoping for a quick return...
Trainer of Group 1 winning Kiwi filly Ruud Awakening, Stephen Marsh has made the announcement she will travel across the Tasman for the Golden Slipper 2013 next month with the hefty $150,000 late entry to get her into the world’s richest juveniles race to be paid by connections.
The daughter of Bernardini, a $90,000 buy from the 2012 NZ Bloodstock Premier Yearling Sale, has been a revelation for Marsh’s Cambridge stables winning five of her opening six career starts.
Her most recent effort was the most impressive and the one that has earned her a shot at the $3.5 million Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill Racecourse on April 6 during the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.
Backing up from a three length victory in the Listed Karaka Million (1200m) in January when ridden by Aussie hoop Craig Williams Ruud Awakening scored her maiden Group 1 success with an effortless and all-too-easy win over Bounding in the Haunui Farm Diamond Stakes at Ellerslie on March 9.
“She has been professional right the way through and she just keeps getting better with each run,” Marsh told Sky Sports Radio.
“She can run the time, she’s won races here leading, ridden midfield or getting back to last.”
It is now all systems go for the non-originally nominated filly for a Golden Slipper campaign after Marsh confirmed she pulled up well from her Group 1 triumph.
“It has been in the back of our minds for a while but we have always wanted to get the Diamond Stakes out of the way here first,” Marsh said of the Golden Slipper 2013.
“If she came through that race well we were always going to come to the Slipper and she has come through the run perfect.
“We will pay the late entry and come across.
“She still had a bit left in the tank as well and she ran a super quick time of 1.08:7 and I think she still has a lot of upside to her.
“I think we’ve got a filly that can measure up.”
Marsh also said that her Karaka Million winning jockey Williams was their No. 1 choice for her Slipper bid down under if he was available and willing to reunite with her with Oppi Bosson having ridden her for the Diamond Stakes.
“We’ve been speaking to Craig Williams’ manager and at this stage it would look pretty likely Craig will ride her in the Slipper,” Marsh said.
“We would be rapt to have Craig on the horse. He is an absolute professional and such a great rider.
“At this stage we will fly over on the 27th of March and she will have a bit of time to settle in and get used to surroundings.
“She might even have a gallop on the Rosehill course proper and have a look at that before she lines up for the main event.
“To come over and have a crack at the Slipper, a race no New Zealander has ever been able to win before, it is certainly a huge thrill.”
Despite not being nominated the bookies had been taking zero chances with Ruud Awakening installing her in their futures Golden Slipper odds.
She currently pays a generous $34, a price that is sure to firm with the announcement she will be a late entry for the feature two-year-olds’ showdown.
Current Golden Slipper betting markets meanwhile are led by the Gai Waterhouse-trained Widden Stakes winner Overreach ($4.40) and Villa Verde ($8) who is set to resume racing in the Reisling Stakes Saturday week.
Think the NZ form will stack up and Ruud Awakening is a nice smokey for a Golden Slipper upset?
Back her now online at the best price through bookmaker.com.au where you will also be able to access futures markets for all the upcoming Sydney features.
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