A capacity field of Stradbroke Handicap hopefuls...
Things got off to a fast start for the blue colours of Godolphin on Saturday as two-year-old filly Tenley remained undefeated winning the Group 2 Reisling Stakes (1200m) at Randwick.
The James Cummings trained speedster was the $3.60 favourite with Ladbrokes prior to the race, and did not disappoint over the final furlong.
Jockey James McDonald found himself one off the fence on the turn to go on and win by two-lengths from fellow stablemate Exhilarates. The pair earned Godolphin the quinella, but more importantly, Tenley has now secured her spot in the $3.5 million Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) in two weeks’ time.
“She jumped really well today, traveled good, had a lovely cart in to the race and just goes bang” McDonald told Sky Racing after the win.
Tenley, who won the Pierro Plate (1200m) in a strong field at Randwick last month, continues to improve on the way to her first-ever Group 1 start. The three-time winner has now firmed from $15.00 into $6.00 for the Slipper, while McDonald thinks his ride is a great chance to put up a strong performance.
“She’s a beauty, she’s just got a great constitution, she absorbs pressure, she’s got a great turn of foot, she sustains a really good gallop, she ticks a lot of boxes.”
Godolphin now have a host of Slipper chances on March 23, including $6.00 favourite Microphone and $26.00 chance Athiri. Like McDonald, Cummings thinks Tenley is a great chance as she continues to improve, while he also has high hopes for Exhilarates, who has drifted from $6.00 out to $8.00 despite running second first-up on Saturday.
“She’s just improved out of sight like you would not believe since her performance last preparation, but since she’s gotten to the stable this time through Crown Lodge she’s just been flying and improved and improved, there’s not one occasion where she’s come out and let us down on any light work or gallop. The bottom you saw there was the bottom of a serious filly” Cummings said on Tenley’s win.
On Exhilarates: “Very, very good off a good break between races, having not raced since the 12th of January that’s perfect for her, hopefully it has a little touch of the Capitalist to her two weeks out from the Slipper.”
Brisbane horse Vincere Volare also ran on strongly to finish third in her first ever trip to Sydney.
Full Golden Slipper Odds:
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