Godolphin’s head trainer John O’Shea believes this year’s Golden Slipper winner will come out of Saturday’s Silver Slipper Stakes 2015 at Rosehill Gardens, and he’s confident his smart filly Ottoman is going good enough to stake her claims.
The Exceed And Excel filly is undefeated having won her only career start to date, a set weights race for juveniles over 1100m at Rosehill in December.
She now runs again in her 2015 debut this weekend back at the track against what O’Shea believes is going to be a “slick field” in the $250,000 Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes (1100m).
The headline race in Sydney this Saturday, the Group 1 action taking place in Melbourne for Black Caviar Lightning Stakes Day, the Silver Slipper Stakes feature a host of the top chances heading towards the $3.5 million Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes (1200m) on March 21.
The two juveniles currently leading the futures Golden Slipper odds at Ladbrokes.com.au are Ottoman and the Gai Waterhouse-trained Vancouver at $7 each to win, followed by current Blue Diamond Stakes favourite Fontiton ($8) who won again on the weekend in the Blue Diamond Fillies Prelude.
In the Silver Slipper on Saturday Godolphin’s No. 1 chance for the world’s richest two-year-olds’ race next month Ottoman will face off with Waterhouse’s Canonbury Stakes winning colt Vancouver.
Also confirmed for the Golden Slipper lead-up showdown are smart debut winners Paceman for Peter & Paul Snowden and Headwater representing last year’s winning stable Hawkes Racing, as well as O’Shea’s other starter Holler.
“It’s obviously going to be a very slick race. I’d say probably the Slipper winner will come out of it,” O’Shea told TVN on Sunday.
Commands colt Holler also won on debut at Randwick last month beating Encosta Line (2nd) and subsequent Group 3 Widden Stakes winner Fireworks (3rd) over 1100m.
He’s at much juicer odds in the futures Golden Slipper betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au though paying $26, a price sure to firm if he scores an upset over his better fancied stablemate in Saturday’s Silver Slipper Stakes.
“They’ll gallop Tuesday and go to the races,” O’Shea said of his Silver Slipper Stakes-bound duo.
“I couldn’t be happier with them. We’ll turn up and see how we go.”
Also Golden Slipper-bound for O’Shea and racing powerhouse Godolphin is Saturday’s Lonhro Plate winner Haptic.
Now the $11 fourth favourite to win the Group 1, the Exceed And Excel colt won the Listed race at Randwick by three-quarters of a length over stablemate Furnaces.
He will go straight into the Golden Slipper now without another run, the five weeks between now and the big one a non-issue for the horse who likes his starts well-spaced.
As for Furnaces, he backs up in the $300,000 Group 2 Todman Stakes (1200m) back at Royal Randwick on March 7, the same day Lonhro filly Calavertie – sixth in the Lonhro Plate – will contest the $300,000 Group 2 Reisling Stakes (1200m).
“I thought he (Furnaces) raced really well,” O’Shea said of the colt who came off a 14-week break between races.
“He will derive a lot of benefit from that run.”
To get behind your favourites in the Silver Slipper this weekend, nominations due out shortly, or for the Golden Slipper in March make sure you place your bets online at Ladbrokes.com.au – home of the $250 free bet bonus offer!