Earthquake is an easing favourite for the Golden Slipper. Picture courtesy of: sportpix.com.au
Favourite Earthquake will have to create Golden Slipper history on Saturday, after drawing barrier 13. Not only is 13 regarded as unlucky numerically, but no two-year-old has won from that gate since the Slipper became part of the Australian racing landscape in 1957.
But if connections of the Peter Snowden trained filly are superstitious, they should pray there are no scratchings because emergency, the aptly named Scratch Me Lucky , has barrier 12 and the unlucky 13 gate would become Unencumbered’s on race day.
Last year’s winner Overreach started from the inside barrier, which is the most successful with nine winners. This year, Melbourne visitor Jabali from the Mick Price stable, has the coveted ‘fence stall’ for the richest juvenile race in the world. Triple Melbourne Cup winning jockey Glen Boss has the ride on Jabali. Price’s other runner, Cornrow , drew barrier 8 and will be piloted by Damien Oliver, who opted to switch from Jabali.
Australia’s leading lady, Gai Waterhouse, was blessed at the draw,with Valentia and Law faring well. With Tommy Berry in the saddle, Valentia will start from gate 4 and Law (to be ridden by Tim Clark) has 7.
While Earthquake’s jockey Kerrin McEvoy will have to avoid being caught wide, another of Snowden’s hopes, Ghibellines , can get a smother from barrier 2 and has been a big firmer. Second favourite Mossfun has drawn midfield.
The 2014 Golden Slipper boasts prizemoney of $3.5m.
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