Australia: Godolphin Primed For Golden Slipper At Rosehill

The world’s richest race for 2-year-olds, the $3.5 million (AUD) Golden Slipper, is one of five Group One races on a superb program at Sydney’s “Rosehill Gardens” this Friday night. The “Slipper” is carded as the seventh race and is available to stream on the new Sky Racing World App and will be broadcast live on TVG (First Post: 9:30 p.m. ET / 6:30 p.m. PT).

The Golden Slipper (six furlongs) is the first leg of a juvenile “triple crown,” staged at two-week intervals over increasing distances. The seven-furlong Sires’ Produce is part of “The Championships” at Randwick, a two-day feast of racing early next month with purses exceeding $21 million (AUD). The one-mile Champagne Stakes will be run on April 16, closing day of Sydney’s “Autumn Racing Carnival.”

I have witnessed one Golden Slipper, won by Inspired in 1984, when Darren Beadman became just the second jockey to win as an apprentice. In the ensuing 36 years, no “bug boy” has replicated the feat and Beadman – after a stellar career as a senior jockey – is now an assistant trainer and stable representative for Godolphin in Australia.

Godolphin swept the Slipper trifecta in 2019 and has two runners in this year’s renewal: Ingratiating (16-1) and Anamoe (14-1). In a race with massive breeding implications, the Godolphin colts fly the U.S. flag as sons of Frosted and Street Boss, respectively. Ingratiating became the first stakes winner worldwide for new sire, Frosted, while Street Boss is a longtime shuttle stallion enjoying an excellent season Down Under. Anamoe’s American connection extends to his dam, Anamato, a G1-winning filly in Australia whose trainer, David Hayes, brought her to Hollywood Park for a third-place finish in the 2007 American Oaks.

Anamoe brings a powerful formline into the Golden Slipper, upsetting the season’s hottest juvenile race two weeks ago – a day on which nine of the past ten Slipper winners have competed. Of two prep races that afternoon, the Todman Slipper Trial for colts and geldings – named after the Golden Slipper’s inaugural winner in 1957 – was a highly anticipated showdown between undefeated colts Profiteer and Stay Inside. Anamoe stole the show, yet is again ranked a relative outcast at double-digit odds this Friday night. The reason is two-fold: he enjoyed a perfect trip in the Todman, but has been dealt the extreme outside post position (16) in the Golden Slipper. Conversely, circumstances conspired against both Profiteer and Stay Inside, who lost no luster in the eyes of their respective camps. Both have drawn favorably and share Slipper favoritism at 3-1.

As Godolphin aims for a second Golden Slipper, trainer Chris Waller will attempt to remove a proverbial monkey from his back. Sydney’s perennial leading conditioner has amassed 119 Group One wins, but a scant three have come in juvenile races. Only five 2-year-olds have previously represented Waller in the Golden Slipper, without finishing on the board (his most recent pair blossomed as 3-year-olds: Yes Yes Yes winning The Everest and Hungry Heart claiming last week’s Phar Lap Stakes). Waller acknowledges the perception that preparing 2-year-olds is his “Achilles heel,” but believes that “in time we will get a Golden Slipper on the mantelpiece.”

To that end, his juvenile team has accounted for numerous stakes races so far (in a Southern Hemisphere season that began in August). Waller’s biggest numerical assault on the Slipper comprises Shaquero (25-1), Home Affairs (16-1) and O’president (17-1). While the best racehorse names are lauded for their ingenuity (Profiteer is by Capitalist; Ingratiating is out of Obsequious), none is more eyebrow-raising than O’president, whose dam is O’marilyn.

Two hours before the Golden Slipper is run and won, an example of Chris Waller’s prowess with maturing horses will be displayed in a marquee renewal of the G1 Ranvet Stakes (Race 4). Quirky and intractable in her younger days, Verry Elleegant has furnished into a top-class professional athlete under Waller’s tutelage. The 5-year-old mare has won five Group One races in the past year, exhibiting tigerish tenacity to clinch four of them in heart-stopping photo finishes. Her ½-length loss to English stayer Addeybb in the 2020 Ranvet was the “Race of the Carnival,” and the pair will lock horns again Friday night in the weight-for-age contest at 1 1/4 miles. Each horse follows an identical preparation to last year, with Addeybb (4-5 favorite) unraced since winning the G1 Champion Stakes at Ascot in October and Verry Elleegant (6-5) making her third start of the year.

Friday’s other Group One races are the Rosehill Guineas (R5, 1 1/4 miles for 3-year-olds), the George Ryder Stakes (R6, 7.5 furlongs at weight-for-age) and The Galaxy (R8, 5.5 furlongs under handicap conditions). Although predicted rain leading up to last Friday night’s card did not eventuate, Sydney is being deluged this week and a “heavy” surface is inevitable.

The Rosehill card will be broadcast live on TVG this Friday night (First Post: 9:30 p.m. ET / 6:30 p.m. PT) alongside cards from Eagle Farm, Goulburn and Ascot. All races will be live-streamed in HD on the new Sky Racing World Appskyracingworld.com and major ADW platforms such as TVG, TwinSpiresXpressbet, NYRABets, WatchandWagerHPIbet, and AmWager. Wagering is also available via these ADW platforms. Fans can get free access to live-streaming, past performances and expert picks on all races at skyracingworld.com.

A native of Brisbane, Australia, Michael Wrona has called races in six countries. Wrona’s vast U.S. experience includes; race calling at Los Alamitos, Hollywood Park, Arlington and Santa Anita, calling the 2000 Preakness on a national radio network and the 2016 Breeders’ Cup on the International simulcast network. Wrona also performed a race call voiceover for a Seinfeld episode called The Subway.

The post Australia: Godolphin Primed For Golden Slipper At Rosehill appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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