Trainer John O’Shea will step Pearls up to the Group 1 company in the Flight Stakes after scoring a upset win in the Group 2 $175,000 Coolmore Tea Rose Stakes (1400m) at Randwick today.
Winning jockey Sam Clipperton settled Pearls ($14) in the second half of the field and brought the filly down the centre of the Randwick straight to score a neck win over another roughie Honesta ($21) with the favourite Kimberley Star ($3.80) running on fairly for third.
O’Shea said that Pearls had been a late bloomer and the stable had given her plenty of time to mature before heading off to the races.
Today’s run was only Pearls’ third race start but O’Shea wasn’t worried about tackling Group 2 company even though she was a last start second at the Canterbury mid-week meeting on September 2.
O’Shea is confident that the Exceed And Excel filly will handle the step up to 1600m and now head towards the Group 1 $500,000 Flight Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on October 3.
“We hoped that she would run up to that today. She is a quality filly and has a good preparation,” O’Shea said.
“She was very excitable as a young filly and physically not there and we had to be a little kinder and patient with her.”
“The Flight Stakes is a natural progression and we felt that she might run a strong mile.”
“If she was to come through it well it would be a natural race for her.”
The Gai Waterhouse trained Kimberley Star was caught wide in the early and middle stages and battled on well in the straight.
Tea Rose Stakes results
|1||12||PEARLS||John O’Shea||Sam Clipperton||–||6||56kg||$14|
|2||8||HONESTA||John P Thompson||Tye Angland||0.3L||9||56kg||$21|
|3||4||KIMBERLEY STAR||Gai Waterhouse||Blake Shinn||2.1L||7||56kg||$3.80F|
|4||9||SEMPRE LIBERA||Gai Waterhouse||Joshua Parr||2.8L||1||56kg||$6|
|5||6||PERIGNON||Gerald Ryan||Hugh Bowman||3L||2||56kg||$4.60|
|6||13||SOFIA ROSA (NZ)||Stephen Marsh||Brenton Avdulla||3.1L||4||56kg||$17|
|7||1||OTTOMAN||John O’Shea||James McDonald||4.5L||5||56kg||$5|
|8||2||LAKE GENEVA||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||Tommy Berry||9.1L||8||56kg||$10|
|9||14||METEORA MISS||Anthony Cummings||Jim Cassidy||20.3L||10||56kg||$61|
|10||10||IN HER TIME||Benjamin Smith||Mitchell Bell||27.8L||3||56kg||$21|