The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Tony McEvoy’s Golden Slipper second placed filly Oohood backs-up as favourite in this Saturday’s 2018 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes field at Royal Randwick.
Dubbed as Australia’s classiest maiden, the I Am Invincible filly has posted three seconds and two thirds from five career starts for just over $800,000 in prize money to date.
This weekend McEvoy is hoping Oohood can finally shrug the maiden tag and enjoy her first turf triumph on Day 1 of ‘The Championships’ in the Group 1 $1 million Inglis Sires’ (1400m).
The two-years-old set weights clash attracted a 15 starter field and Oohood in gate eight is early $4 favourite in the ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes odds at Ladbrokes.com.au.
Jockey Zac Purton chases his third win in the race after previous success aboard Excites (2006) who was the last maiden to win the ATC Sires’ and Yankee Rose (2016), the hoop retaining the ride on Oohood after the narrow second to Estijaab in the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) on March 24.
That was the first Sydney run for Oohood whose other starts were all in Melbourne and included also a third in the Group 1 Ladbrokes Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m).
Fitter for the Golden Slipper run, the filly gets the chance to be first past the post stepping up in distance and coming off the same form as Yankee Rose who also ran second in the Slipper before her Sires’ win with Purton in the saddle.
“She’s put 5kg on since the Slipper, she’s really thriving,” McEvoy said of Oohood speaking to Racing NSW.
“She bounced out of the race lovely and sound and she’s really happy. I gave her some striding work at Warwick Farm on Saturday and she’s going really well.
“She’ll just do some in hand work a couple of times this week, she doesn’t need to gallop again.
“I think she showed to me last start she’s arrived as a racehorse.
“In Melbourne he was making a lot of mistakes but she made no mistakes last week.”
Following Oohood closely in the ATC Sires’ odds for the weekend at $5 is the rails-drawn Seabrook.
The Mick Price-trained Hinchinbrook filly won Randwick’s Group 2 Sweet Embrace Stakes (1200m) two back before her fifth when only two lengths off the winner in the Slipper.
Drawn wide that day in barrier 11 of 16, this Saturday Seabrook gets things her way from gate one with jockey Damien Oliver retaining the ride.
Long Leaf is the other big winner in the Inglis Sires’ barriers, the Lindsay Park-trained Fastnet Rock colt in gate two and looking to improve on his sixth in the Golden Slipper when also drawn wide (15).
Co-trainer David Hayes prepared back-to-back Sires’ winners in 1993-94 and said Long Leaf was luckless last time out ahead of this year’s race.
“Long Leaf, I think, was one of the better runs in the Slipper,” he said.
Long Leaf galloped at Tuesday morning’s Breakfast With The Stars at Randwick without blinkers, but will don them again on race day according to jockey Kerrin McEvoy.
“He’s had the blinkers on in the Slipper but he didn’t have them on this morning,” he said.
“He was a bit goofy working around, he pleased me and he’s going to get to the races and switch on more with the blinkers on.”
Other notable Inglis Sires’ Produce Stakes hopes include James Cummings’ Black Opal Stakes winner Encryption with work to do from barrier 13 and three for Team Snowden led by perennial placegetter Spin.
2018 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes Field & Odds
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